6 ways B.C. is so great for electric vehicles
Plug-in vehicles ideally suited to British Columbia
Note: This story was updated March 29, 2016.
The Vancouver International Auto Show made its annual stop in the Lower Mainland last week. The Vancouver Convention Centre was filled with all kinds of automobiles, and showcased a variety of vehicles running on alternative energy sources.
The interest in B.C. around alternative energy vehicles, including hydrogen fuel cells, hybrids, and plug-in electrics, has been increasing, and with good reason. The truth is that B.C. is a great place to drive EVs.
1. Most of us have a short distance to commute
Range anxiety is quickly becoming a thing of the past as automakers significantly increase, with each model year, the distance their EVs can go without needing to plug in again. But in B.C, even older EVs are up to the task of the daily commute. According to Statistics Canada, nearly 90% of British Columbians live in a metropolitan area, where the distance from home to work is usually less than 50 km, easily within the range of EVs currently available in the province.
2. EV drivers can drive in HOV lanes even when riding solo
Announced by Premier Christy Clark at the recent Globe Conference on Sustainability and Innovation, drivers of eligible alternative energy vehicles can use HOV lanes without having to comply with occupancy requirements.
3. EV drivers get to park in the best spaces
4. It's free to charge EVs at many public locations
EV charging is free at MEC stores across Canada. Other businesses, including hotels and restaurants, are also providing charging stations for customers.
And charging is also free at many facilities operated by municipalities. It's all to encourage people to choose an alternative to fossil fuel vehicles.
5. You can get a rebate on the purchase of an EV
6. Rates for electricity are among the lowest in North America
BC Hydro's electricity rates are low compared to other cities in North America, and most of the energy generated by BC Hydro's system is clean and renewable.