B.C. government assigns $10 million to incentivize clean-energy vehicle purchases

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      The government of British Columbia is aiming to encourage buyers to purchase electric vehicles by contributing an additional $10 million to the Clean Energy Vehicle Program (CEVP).

      In the fall 2017 budget update, the B.C. government committed $40 million to the CEVP in order to invest in infrastructure and raise awareness of electric transportation. Of that money, $27 million was assigned to the CEVforBC vehicle incentive program: a scheme that provides a rebate when buying a new electric car.

      Due to the popularity of the incentive program, the $27 million would have been depleted by the end of this month (September 2018) without the additional $10 million top-up.

      “We are making it easier for everyone in our province to choose a clean-energy vehicle as their next purchase,” said Michelle Mungall, minister of energy, mines and petroleum resources. “These additional funds will make transportation more affordable today, while supporting our long-term work to build a cleaner future.”

      The cash injection will act as a bridge until the provincial government releases its new strategy for a clean-growth future, which will likely include a renewal of the CEVP program. The document is expected later this year.

      A transition to clean-energy vehicles will be an important part of meeting the province’s updated greenhouse gas reduction targets. The B.C. government is aiming for a 40 percent reduction in carbon emissions from 2007 levels by 2030, and a 60 percent reduction from 2007 levels by 2040. The upcoming clean-growth plan aims to transition the region away from fossil fuels in a way that stimulates the economy.

      The CEVforBC initiative offers incentives of $5,000 off the purchase price or lease of a new battery electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. It also provides up to $6,000 towards any hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle.

      The $27 million allocated to the CEVofBC program is expected to bring more than 6,000 clean-energy vehicles onto the roads.

      The latest statistics indicate British Columbia has the highest per-capita electric-vehicle adoption rate in Canada. British Columbia had the highest market share of electric-vehicle sales in Canada, totalling 3.7 percent in June. Between April and June of this year, more than 1,400 incentive applications were paid out to consumers.

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