Electrifying transportation is key to fighting climate change and building a sustainable future. In Québec and Canada, transportation accounts for over 30% of total greenhouse-gas emissions. And worse, emissions from road transportation have risen 35% since 1990 and show no signs of slowing down. We must therefore shift from carbon-based fuel to zero-emission engines and EVs offer the cleanest, cheapest solution to shift demand away from gas-powered personal vehicles. Last year, WWF-Canada announced our Transportation rEVolution program with an ambitious goal: by 2020, we want to see 600,000 electric vehicles on Canadian roads.
But going electric won’t happen overnight. In order to make EVs appealing to individuals and businesses, widespread infrastructure (i.e. charging stations) is needed. We also need early adopters – such as public and corporate fleets – and advocates – such as community leaders and corporations – to champion the idea. WWF is working to promote EVs by focusing on their environmental potential as well as on the incremental successes that are already happening. See for yourself our numerous testimonies of happy EV owners or drivers.
Quebec is leading the charge by setting an aggressive target for electric vehicles: shifting 25% of all vehicle sales to EVs by 2020. Quebec also offers great incentives for purchasing electric vehicles and installing charging infrastructure – up to $8,500 per new EV. (For information on other provinces, see this previous blog post.
In this context, Hydro-Québec has initiated the successful public-private infrastructure initiative Electric Circuit, which recruits businesses to install charging stations for use within a public membership-based network. It’s Canada’s leading public charging network, and so far it has rallied major home brands around the concept of publicly accessible charging facilities.
We hope to convince more partners to join the rEVolution by installing retail or workplace charging stations , thereby making it easier for Canadians to access and drive EVs . Hopefully this is the first step towards a world fueled by renewable energy.
Would your employer be a potential candidate for charging infrastructure? Let us know!