Canada’s war on gas run cars!
Recently Canadian government announced gradual phasing out of gas cars by 2035. With thousands of gas stations, and millions using gas cars everyday is it a mere hope for the future or an starn warning only time will tell.
But for now when you're carpooling with someone, it is only polite to chip in money to cover the cost of gas mainly when the gas prices are at an all time high of $1.30/litre in Canada (Gas Buddy, 2021). Yet, recently while carpooling from Scarborough to Kingston to celebrate the birthday of a friend, I had a much different experience. Despite my earnest offering to pay for gas, I found out that my friend’s car was electric and did not need any gas at all.
Although still a rarity, these experiences are becoming more and more common for many Canadians. According to StatsCan, in 2020, the Electric Vehicle (EV) accounted for 3.5% of all new vehicles sold and are set to grow further in 2021.
(Photo: InQuinte.ca, Tesla Superchargers installed at Quinte Mall in Belleville, On.)
Within Canada, some feel that the “tipping point” for EV usage has arrived. A mere 1,700 cars were sold in 2018 while according to Electric Mobility Canada, more than 168,000 are on the road. Regionally, British Columbia leads the pack, with 8.4% of its new vehicles being electric. Ontario and Quebec, along with BC, make up 95.4% of all Canadian registrations (Jarratt, 2021).
Lowered vehicle prices and green energy subsidies may be critical for EV sales. Quebec and BC, in particular, offer generous rebates for electric vehicle owners. BC’s “Go Electric” program emphasizes a $3,000 credit for vehicles, while the Government of Quebec offers up to $8,000 in returns for vehicles under $60,000. Nationwide, the Government of Canada offers $2,500 - $5,000 incentives.
(Photo: Wikimedia, EV market leaders in 2020)
Although these rebates have undoubtedly helped more Canadians to afford electric vehicles, the Canadian EV market is dwarfed globally. As a percentage of cars, Norway and other nordic countries are leading the way. In Norway, 3 of 4 cars are electric. Overall, China is the world’s largest EV market, with 4.7 million vehicles sold in 2020. Other major global markets include the European Union, USA and Germany.
But while Canada may lag behind many of its peers at present, a recent government action that would ban the sale of internal combustion engines in 2035 may soon push majorities of Canadians into purchasing electrical cars.
And although one Global and Mail article has called the target “delusional”, the recent rollout of an electric Ford F-150, Canada’s best selling pickup, suggests electric vehicles are alas being taken seriously.