As we entered into December, the federal government released their climate action plan, A Healthy Environment and a Health Economy. The NCDA works closely with the Province towards creating a greener future, and we’re encouraged to see these steps being taken at the federal level.
The NCDA, and our close to 400 dealers across the province, are committed in the fight against climate change. More and more auto manufacturers are investing in bringing not only more electric vehicles but also more vehicles with low carbon emissions to market, and at the dealership level we always ensure we are educating consumers on the long-term benefits of such purchases. It is important to us that we are doing our part to lower carbon emissions, and the vehicles that we sell are a huge piece of the puzzle.
Encouraging more consumers to purchase Zero Emission Vehicles (ZEVs), cannot simply be done at the sales level alone. It requires financial incentives, increased investments in charging infrastructure to alleviate range anxiety, and education tools. The NCDA was happy to see the federal government’s commitment to the cause.
According to the plan, the government will invest an additional $287 million over two years to continue the Incentives for Zero-Emission Vehicles program until March 2022. They also plan to invest an additional $150 million over three years in charging and refueling stations across Canada. Both these action items will certainly see an increase in consumer interest over the next few years and move us closer to a greener future.
This proposed plan will not only help make life more affordable for Canadians but will also create jobs for local economies. The initiatives will need more people to take them from plans into actions, so it really is a win-win situation for the sector and post-COVID recovery.
Through plans like this, we will continue to bounce back from the pandemic and look to the future. It will allow for the auto industry to further help boost local economies, one that makes up over 19% of all retail sales in the province annually ($16 billion).
BC is already doing a remarkable job when it comes to the sale of ZEVs – and it is certainly, in part, due to the government’s commitment. It is with thanks to the work of the Province that we are able to administer the widely successful CleanBC Go Electric Vehicle Rebate Program. The program offers up to $3,000 in rebates when purchasing electric vehicles in BC and $1,500 in rebates for plug-in hybrid vehicles.
The Province is also committed to offering incentives for those looking to install chargers in their homes and workplaces, another key to consumer purchases. There are also educational tools available for those making the jump, so the switch is as seamless as possible. Visit https://pluginbc.ca/ for more information.
We truly thank the federal government for taking these additional steps towards climate change and boosting the economy. As the Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada said, “Canadians don’t have to choose between clean air and good jobs.” And this action plan will only further move us in that direction.
Happy holidays, everyone and stay safe.
Blair Qualey is President and CEO of the New Car Dealers Association of BC. You can email him at [email protected]