So you want to drive your electric car through the mountains, where the air is freshest and the sky is clear?
Taking a route through Valemount may be closer to a reality, after the Valemount Tourism Committee applies for an electric vehicle charging station.
The village would sell the electricity through a self-serve station, similar to a parking meter, says Village councillor Christine Latimer. The revenue would then be put into village coffers.
According to BC Hydro, agencies setting up charge stations cannot charge directly for the power – they must instead charge for the “convenience” of the station, for example by charging for the parking spot in front of the charger.
Latimer says the Best Western Plus Inn and Suites, where she is general manager, is also considering installing a station.
The tourism committee intends to apply for a provincial rebate to cover up to 75 per cent of the cost of the charging unit, or up to $4,000. The charging stations and their installation can cost anywhere between $700 and $10,000, depending on speed and sophistication.
The province is subsidizing 454 new charging stations in communities throughout the province as part of the $2.7-million Community Charging Infrastructure (CCI) Fund announced in April by Minister of Environment Terry Lake. Organizations will receive 75 per cent of the cost through the fund, up to $4,000 per station, to purchase and install 286 level two charging stations. Twelve local municipal/regional governments will also receive $184, 416 in funding to help plan and identify priority locations for 168 additional stations. These local governments include Terrace, Fort St. John, Campbell River, Dawson Creek, Duncan, Merritt among others.
According to BC Hydro, an average charge, based on current rates, should cost less than one dollar per day. This works out to be approximately $300 per year. However it takes a lot longer to fully charge the battery – from 25 minutes to eight hours.
ICBC currently insures electric vehicles at the same rates as non-electric vehicles.
According to the US Department of Energy, there are currently 4,466 electric charging stations in the United States.
By 2018, there will be at least 500,000 highway-capable plug-in electric vehicles on Canada’s roads, according to a report from the Canadian electric vehicle industry in 2010.