Canada has a pretty aggressive plan for
going green. Our northern neighbors plan to phase out gas and diesel-fueled powertrains within the next 14 years.
The country’s federal government had already set a similar target for 2040 but recently announced the five-year trim to the plan. The transition to
electric and hydrogen-powered vehiclesis part of an overall strategy to be a zero-emissions economy by 2050.
Canada’s plan mirrors those of many
European countriesthat also expect to ban gas and diesel vehicles within the next 15-25 years.
Canada’s green-vehicle transition: the details
The Canadian government’s 2035 goal isn’t just empty words, but it also won’t be easy to achieve. In his announcement, the country’s transportation minister, Omar Alghabra, said interim targets are set for 2025 and 2030, and will be met using a combination of regulation, tax incentives, and $8 billion in investments.
Autoweekpoints out, Canada has a few obstacles to overcome in order to achieve its goal, the most obvious being its vastness. While the majority of Canadians live within a few hours’ drive of the country’s southern border, building a
charging networkthat reaches its more northern municipalities could prove difficult.
Canada will also have to compete with the rest of the world for whatever supply of electric vehicles becomes available within the coming years. Electric pickups will be especially desirable in the country—a vehicle type that, as of now, is only offered in six models.
How America stacks up to its allies in the powertrain transition
The U.S. has its own plan to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, but so far, no plan for a combustion-engine ban has been announced by the federal government. That type of legislation usually starts at the state level, which has already begun to bubble up to the surface.
Autoweek notes that last year,
CaliforniaGovernor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order that would ban the sale of gas and diesel vehicles by 2035, although critics argue that the move doesn’t actually hold any water, legally speaking.
Washington Statelegislature attempted a similar goal with the target set at 2030, but Governor Jay Inslee vetoed the bill. Both Washington and California have yet to develop a strategy that matches Canada’s, but their attempts show the beginnings of a trend that’s likely to grow in the coming years.
The current cost for individuals to switch to electric
One thing both countries will have to tackle is the cost for their citizens to make the switch to an electric or hydrogen-fuel car. Despite the widening price range for electric vehicles, other expenses make going electric still too expensive for many North Americans.
Besides the initial investment in the new car, EV drivers need to install a charger at home, which
Edmundssays can cost between $1,000 and $10,000. Finding a mechanic with reasonable rates is also expensive and difficult.
But there are ways to save on the process. State and federal governments often offer tax incentives, and many car insurance companies offer discounts for electric car owners.
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