BC to phase out car fossil fuels by 2040

British Columbia has once again shown itself to be a champion of sustainability with the passage of a new law that will phase out the sale of fossil fuel-emitting cars by 2040.

The Zero-Emission Vehicles Act (ZEVA), a commitment under the provincial government’s CleanBC plan, was passed by lawmakers on 29 May.

Amidst this most recent achievement for the sustainability movement, inspiratia is bringing together EV industry leaders from across the globe to British Columbia for EVS Whistler on November 19-22.

British Columbians are already buying the most zero-emission vehicles per capita in Canada – including battery electric, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles. In the first quarter of 2019, they made up over 6% of new "light-duty" vehicle sales in BC – up from just 1% in 2015. Industry experts predict sales will reach 10% by 2025.

"With federal and provincial rebates now in place, switching to an electric vehicle is more affordable than ever," Michelle Mungall, the BC minister of energy, said in a statement last Wednesday [29 May].

She added, "The Zero-Emission Vehicles Act will make sure British Columbia continues to be on the forefront of the clean energy revolution."

The new law is based on laws already in effect in Quebec, California and nine other US states. Sixteen countries – among them China, France, Japan, and the UK – are pursuing a phase-out of fossil fuel-powered cars.

Under the new BC law, electric vehicles will be required to account for 10% of new "light-duty" vehicle sales by 2025, 30% by 2030 and 100% by 2040. The automaker requirements would kick off in 2020.

The law would also offer car buyers up to Can$5,000 to purchase or lease new battery electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and up to Can$6,000 for hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles.

BC has one of the largest public charging networks in Canada and the first public hydrogen fuelling station. By the end of 2018, there were over 1,700 public charging stations throughout BC, including 92 public DC fast charging sites with another 72 DC fast charging sites planned to be complete by the start of 2020.

EVS Whistler 2019

inspiratia’s analysis has found that vehicle OEMs – alongside government-funded regulatory and incentive programmes targeting lower carbon emissions from vehicles – will spend more than US$300 billion globally on EV technologies and related research in the next 5-10 years.

The entrance of institutional investors in the EV and EVSE markets soared in 2018 – a theme that will be in the spotlight at EVS Whistler 2019– with more deals coming to a close in Q1 2019.

Plays by Amazon and Ford into Rivian are representative of the growing confidence of operators as well as the big players in the tech world in the long-term viability of EVs. This year is likely to see further heavyweight investors – such as sovereign wealth funds (like the Saudi investment in Rivian or GIC‘s investment in ChargePoint last year) and institutional funds (such as when CPPIB joined in on the ChargePoint Series H fundraise) – back the EV market.


Copyright Inspiratia 2018. All rights reserved. Inspiratia is a trading name for STMCB Limited, registered in England. Company number 07296086.