CleanBC’s Go Electric programs will offer new rebates and supports for charging infrastructure to British Columbia municipalities and businesses building electric vehicle fleets.
“We want to encourage more B.C. businesses, Indigenous Nations, municipalities and regional districts to make the switch to electric vehicles in their fleets,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation.
According to Ralston, the rebates and supports will make it easier for fleet owners to install chargers on site. This will help the province further its CleanBC goals and municipalities and businesses meet their climate change targets.
The Go Electric Fleets program offers rebates for the purchase and installation of level 2 and direct-current fast-charging stations for fleets of one or more EVs. For a limited time, eligible businesses purchasing and installing level 2 charging stations can access a higher rebate of up to $4,000 per station, representing an increase from 50 per cent to 75 per cent of basic rates.
Businesses and municipalities purchasing electric vehicles for a fleet are eligible for the same $3,000 point-of-purchase vehicle rebates as the general public in B.C.
Andrew Mitchell, president and CEO, Victoria-based Geazone Eco-Courier says “This is a great addition by the Province to further its commitment to clean energy in the transportation sector.” Mitchell adds the program will help his company expand its existing fleet of 100 per cent electric vehicles. The company’s fleet currently is made up of human-powered tricycles, cars and fully electric five-tonne trucks.
In 2019, when the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) purchased its first EV, just under 30 per cent of its greenhouse gas emissions came from fleet vehicles. To move closer to the regional district’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and achieving carbon neutrality, it added two more electric vehicles in 2020.
According to the RDKB, staff use the EVs in all seasons for shorter trips locally and for longer travel between the two offices located on either side of a major mountain pass. With an EV infrastructure study completed and a low-carbon fleet plan in place, the RDKB says it now has a clear roadmap to full electrification of their passenger and light-duty fleet vehicles and the electrical infrastructure and EV supply equipment to support it.
“Our regional district covers an area of about 8,000 square kilometres of mountainous highways with often adverse driving conditions,” said Diane Langman, chair for the board of directors of the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary. “That the RDKB is well on the way to converting our light-duty fleet to electric is proof that rural and urban local governments can do this with supports such as the CleanBC program.”
Eligible businesses and municipalities can access other fleet program offers, including up to 40 hours of free support services from a zero-emission vehicle fleet advisor under the Fleets program. The support services include consultations, educational sessions and technical assessments for charging infrastructure upgrades and equipment.
George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy said the government of British Columbia is “committed to supporting Indigenous Nations, local governments and small businesses as they look for better ways to deliver products and services to people across the province.”
The Fleets program offers increased rebates to Indigenous Nations, organizations and businesses in BC for EV fleet charging infrastructure. Eligible Indigenous-owned businesses have access to higher rebates for the purchase and installation of level 2 and direct-current fast-charging stations.
Indigenous Nations and Indigenous-owned businesses also have access to other increased supports available through CleanBC Go Electric programming, including higher rebates for public EV charging stations through the Public Charger program announced in September 2020.
Currently, BC leads Canada in the transition to electric vehicles with over 46,000 light-duty EVs on the road. With more than 2,000 public charging stations in the province, public infrastructure has more than doubled since 2017.