Road transport accounts for approximately 20% of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. (Photo: The Canadian Press)
OTTAWA – Federal Environment Minister Stephen Gelbolt plans to take action to ensure that from the end of 2022 or no later than the beginning of 2023, car dealers in Canada are required to sell a certain number of electric vehicles.
Quotas in this direction have already existed in Quebec since 2018; British Columbia followed suit last year.
Road transport accounts for approximately 20% of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve its zero-emissions goal in 2050, eliminating carbon dioxide emissions from cars will be an important step for the country. The government aims that in 2030, half of the vehicles sold will emit no greenhouse gases and that this percentage will be 100% by 2035.
In the past two years, Canadians have bought more electric cars than the previous eight years combined, but only 3% of purchases were for hybrid or all-electric vehicles. Minister Guilbeault acknowledges that the 50% target by 2030 is very ambitious.
This fall, he launched consultations on how to achieve his goals.
Last year, three-quarters of new electric vehicles sold in Canada were in Quebec, British Columbia and Ontario. Outside of Quebec and British Columbia, the waiting period could be as long as six months, in addition to the recent global shortage of semiconductors.
A year and a half ago, Quebec and British Columbia were the only Canadian provinces to offer consumers subsidies to purchase an electric car. Over the past eighteen months, the four Atlantic provinces as well as Yukon and the Northwest Territories have done the same.
Minister Guilbeault stresses that initiatives from Quebec and British Columbia have contributed to electric vehicle availability, model selection and options, battery autonomy and lower prices.
According to Stephen Gilbolt, if Canada does not act quickly to promote the sale of vehicles without greenhouse gas emissions, it will not benefit from the economic benefits associated with it.
Canada is already lagging behind other industrialized countries in selling electric cars. The proportion is 75% in Norway, 13.5% in Germany, 11.3% in France and the United Kingdom, and 5.7% in China; It’s only 3.5% in Canada.
Most of these countries have increased subsidies for the purchase of electric vehicles.
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