People making the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) will have more access to electric charging with 44 new charging stations in communities and municipalities throughout British Columbia.
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The charging stations are funded under the seventh round of the CleanBC Go Electric Public Charger Program, which aims to increase the number of public direct-current fast-charger (DCFC) stations throughout British Columbia to support the growing number of EVs on the road.
Thirty-nine of the new charging stations are DCFC stations, while five of them are Level 2 charging stations.
Fourteen communities throughout British Columbia will benefit from the charging stations. The program is funding two fast-charging stations each in Coquitlam, Nanaimo, Surrey, Quesnel, Mission, Port Alberni, Summerland, Kitimat and Kelowna, and four fast-charging stations in Vancouver.
The program is also funding two fast-charging stations and four Level 2 charging stations in Whistler, as well as three fast-charging stations and one Level 2 charging station in Richmond. Terrace will receive four fast-charging stations while Victoria will receive eight fast-charging stations.
By switching to an electric vehicle, an average British Columbia driver saves approximately $2,500 every year on fuel, along with lower maintenance costs. Fast chargers allow EV drivers to drive approximately 100 to 300 kilometres from 30 minutes of charging.
Having chargers located along travel routes and remote locations encourages people to travel longer distances in EVs, without having the fear that the EV will run out of charge.
British Columbia has seen substantial growth in EV uptake, from 5,000 light-duty EVs registered in British Columbia in 2016 to more than 85,000 in 2022. It has the one of the highest uptake rates of zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) in North America.
In the first half of 2022, EVs made up 16.4% of new light-duty passenger vehicles sold in the province.
British Columbia has one of the largest public charging networks, as well as the first cluster of public hydrogen-fuelling stations, in Canada. ■