Government of Canada To Invest In Zero-Emission Vehicles


Minister of Transport Marc Garneau, spoke in Montreal to highlight how investments in Budget 2019 would make it easier for Canadians to choose a zero-emission vehicle.

“The time to act on climate is now,” said Garneau. “The Government of Canada is working to accelerate the adoption of zero-emission vehicles to help make it easier for Canadians to be part of the solution to climate change and to reduce their daily driving costs. With these investments, Canada is joining a coalition of international partners working towards a future of zero-emission transportation.”

Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, and Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, were also in Vancouver and Toronto respectively to highlight the new incentive program.

The newly unveiled 2019 budget provides support to expand the network of zero-emission vehicle charging and refuelling stations, and is creating new incentives for people and businesses to purchase zero-emission vehicles.

“We’re committed to supporting businesses who are taking steps today, to help protect our environment for generations to come,” said Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue. “Through tax incentives proposed in Budget 2019, the Canada Revenue Agency will administer the new proposed tax measures to encourage businesses to convert to zero-emission vehicles immediately.”

The government proposes to invest $300 million over three years on a new federal purchase incentive for eligible zero-emission vehicles. The new Incentives for Zero-Emission Vehicles program will supply incentives for zero-emission vehicles, which include battery electric, plug-in hybrid, and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

The incentive program was created with the expert advice given by the Advisory Council on Climate Action in their interim report.

“Zero-emission vehicles are the future of transportation,” said Bains. “Our automotive industry and its workers are world class and uniquely positioned to design, develop and build the cars of today and tomorrow. We are working to advance Canada’s leadership position, promote investment and create an economy founded on highly skilled jobs for the middle class.”

The purchase incentive for zero-emission vehicles will apply to eligible new vehicles that are purchased or leased on or after May 1, 2019. This incentive program is a measure announced in Budget 2019 and is subject to Parliamentary approval.

To be eligible for incentives, a vehicle must have a base-model manufacturer’s suggested retail price of less than $45,000 for passenger vehicles with six or fewer seats, and less than $55,000 for vehicles with seven or more seats. For eligible vehicles with six or fewer seats, higher priced versions (trims) are eligible as long as the final manufacturer’s suggested retail price is $55,000 or less.

Canadians, who purchase or lease an eligible battery electric, hydrogen fuel cell, or longer-range plug-in hybrid vehicle, will receive an incentive of $5,000. Canadians who purchase or lease a shorter-range plug-in hybrid vehicle will receive an incentive of $2,500.

“We are working with Canadians across the country to support practical and affordable solutions to fight climate change,” added McKenna. “The transportation sector is key to Canada’s economy – but it also accounts for a quarter of our emissions. Making sure Canadians have access to options to get where they need to go in a cleaner, cheaper, faster way will protect our environment and grow our economy.”

Transportation accounts for a quarter of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions, almost half of which comes from cars and light trucks, according to the government. To support the transition to a low-carbon transportation system, the federal government has set targets for sales of zero-emission vehicles in Canada, which are as follows: 10 per cent of new light-duty vehicle sales to be zero-emission vehicles by 2025, 30 per cent by 2030, and 100 per cent by 2040.

“The Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association (CVMA) welcomes the Government of Canada’s commitment to invest $300 million over three years to support the purchase of zero-emission vehicles,” said the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association in a statement released about the government’s announcement. “This consumer incentive is critical to increased zero-emission vehicle adoption in Canada which, over time, will lead to decreased GHGs from the transportation sector. The program, in addition to the Budget 2019 commitment to expand the network of zero-emission vehicle charging and refuelling stations, will encourage greater Canadian adoption of zero-emissions transportation.  We look forward to collaborating with the government on the details of the program.”

Nissan Canada also commended the Canada’s government about the incentive program. Nissan’s LEAF EV and the LEAF PLUS would be two zero-emission vehicles to be eligible for the new federal purchase incentive program.

“Nissan Canada is delighted by this announcement, as it will lead to major progress in the adoption of EVs, and ultimately a more sustainable future,” said François Lefevre, chief marketing manager, Nissan LEAF. “As leaders in the EV space, Nissan is continually innovating and striving towards our vision of a zero-emissions future. Support of this sort by the government is just an additional reason for us all to keep working towards a cleaner tomorrow.”