There’s no question about it . . . electric vehicles (EV’s) have gained momentum over the past five years. Virtually every automobile manufacturer now has at least one electric model in their lineup with more to come. Last year, based on vehicle registrations, electric vehicles represented 3.6% of Canadian 2020 vehicle registrations, up over 50% since 2018. In the first three months of 2021, that number has already grown to 5.0% of all vehicles registered.
It’s a trend that will continue for all the right reasons, echoing a comment from the National Research Council of Canada’s website last May, “Building a stronger, cleaner transportation system as Canada recovers from the pandemic is an investment that will pay off – delivering economic and environmental benefits for decades to come. This is why the Government of Canada has set federal targets for zero emission vehicles (ZEV’s) of 10% of light vehicles sales by 2025 and 30% by 2030.”
Mass production, advances in battery technology, and consumer demand have made the EV option more available and affordable over the past five years. Government subsidies have been another factor, plus the growing awareness that Electric Vehicles (EV’s) represent the sustainable future for personal and public transportation. Electrifying our vehicle choices brings down the greenhouse gas (GhG) emissions coming from our gas and diesel powered vehicles. Recent data released by Municipal Energy & Emissions Data (MEED) confirmed that 27.3% of Orillia’s GhG emissions come from transportation, primarily cars. Since Ontario produces clean electrical power, driving an EV creates a meaningful opportunity for Orillians to make progress in reducing this number, while enjoying the ride.
Despite all the ‘right’ reasons, making the switch to an EV represents a challenge for most Canadians and not all EV’s are created equal. So where does one start? And where can one find answers to the many questions one has when contemplating making the switch to an EV? Questions like How does the cost of an EV compare to internal combustion powered vehicles? or What about battery life? Or questions on driving ranges and recharging stations? To answer those questions and many more, Sustainable Orillia has developed and launched an Electric Vehicle Information Portal (EVIP).
Dave VanAlstyne is Sustainable Orillia’s ‘Transportation Guy’ and he has been the lead on this initiative from the start. Dave chairs the Infrastructure & Energy Sector Committee and provides direct leadership to the Transportation Sub-Sector team. Along with his Transportation Team, their overarching vision is to ‘change the way we think about transportation.’ To help accomplish this, their objective was to create a portal that would promote the benefits of buying and operating an electric vehicle while providing links and logistical information on key support systems, such as charging station networks.
This week we are excited to launch Sustainable Orillia’s EVIP. The site brings current and relevant data on electric vehicles together into one organized, user-friendly site. Whether you are considering switching to an EV or already drive one—or perhaps you are simply interested in learning more—you’ll find Sustainable Orillia’s EVIP to be an accessible and well-designed resource for everyone in the community.
The site has pages dedicated to key content areas: About EV’s, Purchasing an EV, Cost Comparisons and Benefits and Testimonials. No doubt the portal’s content will grow over time as Canadians and Orillians gain more experience with EVs, and as auto manufacturers shift more and more of their production to emission-free, earth-friendly vehicles. Readers can visit the EVIP at sustainableorillia.ca/about-electric-vehicles-evs/
As with all of our projects, Sustainable Orillia is very interested in your feedback and suggestions on the EVIP. It has been developed to provide added value for Orillians, and one way you can add to that value is to share your EV experiences, testimonials, tips and ideas with your fellow citizens. The more we hear from you, the stronger and more relevant the site will be. We encourage all readers to visit the new portal and find what you need to start your personal journey towards electrifying your ride.