Rebates to rev up electric cars

B.C. offers breaks for clean vehicles, charge stations

A Nissan Leaf at an electric charging station in Amsterdam. The Leaf is one of the plug-in electric vehicles that will be eligible for B.C. rebates starting in December.

New car buyers in B.C. will get a break of up to $5,000 if they choose a vehicle powered by electricity, hydrogen or compressed natural gas.

The point-of-sale rebate unveiled by the provincial government is part of $17 million in funding to help rev up the future of clean energy vehicles in B.C.

The $2,500-to-$5,000 rebate starts Dec. 1 and covers qualifying new battery electric, hydrogen fuel cell electric, plug-in hybrid electric and natural gas models.

“Manufacturers are eager to launch their new electric, plug-in hybrid electric and fuel cell cars in markets that demonstrate both high demand and with infrastructure in place,” New Car Dealers Association of B.C. CEO Blair Qualey said. “B.C. is now one of those markets.”

New Democrats noted incentives for electric cars aren’t new – B.C. had exempted them from PST until 2008.

But Environment Minister Terry Lake predicted the rebates will encourage buyers to go green by reducing the cost of vehicles with little to no emissions.

Battery-powered electric cars cost as little as $300 per year in electricity compared to $1,500 or more for a gas-powered vehicle.

Homeowners can also get an up to $500 rebate through LiveSmartBC if they install dedicated electric vehicle battery charging stations in their homes.

That covers about a third of the cost of the specialized outlets, which cut recharging times in half to about six hours.

Lake also pledged $6.5 million for electric vehicle charging points and upgrading existing hydrogen fueling stations.

Surrey recently unveiled free public electric vehicle charging stations at its city hall and is already host to two hydrogen fueling stations.

Mercedes-Benz Canada plans to make fuel cell stacks for hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles at a plant in Burnaby.

B.C. is also extending the Scrap-It program, which offers owners of heavily polluting older vehicles either cash or incentives like bus passes or car-share memberships to take their old gas guzzler off the road.

The push towards electric cars will put more pressure on B.C.’s power grid.

Green energy advocate David Field said B.C. needs to ensure the required power comes from renewable clean sources, not imported coal-fired electricity.

The province is trying to restrain electricity rate increases at B.C. Hydro, raising doubts about whether it will continue to pay extra for green energy to foster new run-of-river power plants and windmills.

Just Posted

Duo robs Harrison Hot Springs gas station

Husky manager planning to tighten security

Snow prayers answered as Manning Park ski hill opens Friday

Ski hill will be open seven days a week starting Dec. 14, and cross-country trails as well

Fleeing driver picks fight with Chilliwack police dog, loses

Good dog ‘Griff’ also locates large quantity of what police believe to be crystal meth in Abbotsford

UPDATE: Heavy rainfall, strong winds in forecast for Lower Mainland

Heavy rains, snow expected till Friday morning

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Boeser has 2 points as Canucks ground Flyers 5-1

WATCH: Vancouver has little trouble with slumping Philly side

Man dies after falling from B.C. bridge

Intoxicated man climbed railing, lost his balance and fell into the water below

Hundreds attend Hells Angels funeral in Maple Ridge

Body of Chad John Wilson found last month face-down under the Golden Ears Bridge.

B.C. animation team the ‘heart’ of new ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’

The animators, largely based in Vancouver, ultimately came up with a creative technique that is drawing praise

Light at the end of the tunnel for UN climate talks

Meeting in Katowice was meant to finalize how countries report their emissions of greenhouses gases

Gas prices to climb 11 cents overnight in Lower Mainland

Hike of 17 cents in less than 48 hours due to unexpected shutdown of Washington state pipeline

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in at the 34th induction ceremony

Supreme Court affirms privacy rights for Canadians who share a computer

Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects Canadians against unreasonable search and seizure

Most Read