Current Subsidies for EV Chargers in Canada
13 Apr 2020
The top four reasons why North Americans are afraid to go electric are cost, range, charger availability, and charging time. But as automakers focus more on the research and development of EVs, those hurdles have essentially been cleared.
In fact, more than 40,000 EV units were sold in Canada in 2019, up by 22% than in the previous year. 📈
To encourage more sales, the Canadian government has implemented tax write-offs and purchase incentives to prospective buyers.
But what about business establishments? What’s in it for you?
The Canadian government remains firm in its goal of decarbonizing the transportation sector by encouraging sales of EVs. They hope that by 2030, 30% of vehicle sales will be electric, and by 2040 all new cars sold in Canada will be EVs or other zero-emission vehicles.
But one major concern by potential buyers is the lack of charging 🔌 infrastructure in the country. To alleviate that concern, the government is offering a slew of incentives and subsidies to encourage more EV sales, starting with its Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program (ZEVIP).
Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program
ZEVIP was introduced in 2019 and was included in the national budget. Essentially, the program is fast-tracking the deployment of ZEV charging stations (level 2 and higher) in localized areas around the country.
Among the targets for ZEVIP include:
- Workplaces 🏢. Offices or any other location where employees perform their jobs are categorized as workplaces. Chargers placed must be primarily used by employees.
- Fleets 🚕. Fleet vehicles are those that are owned and/or operated by an individual or organization. Current ZEVIP only targeting light-duty vehicles.
- Multi-unit residential buildings 🏠. MURBs must have a minimum of three (3) dwelling units to qualify for the program.
Under the program, NRCan will shoulder up to 50% of the total project cost, up to a maximum of $5 million per project. Depending on the type of infrastructure, these figures may still differ. Here’s a look at the funding matrix.
|Type of Infrastructure||Output||Maximum Funding|
|Level 2 (208 / 240 V) connectors*||3.3 kW to 19.2 kW||Up to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $5,000 per connector*|
|Fast charger||20 kW to 49 kW||Up to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $15,000 per fast-charger|
|Fast charger||50 kW and above||Up to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $50,000 per fast-charger|
|Hydrogen refueling station||Dispensing at 700 bar minimum||Up to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $1,000,000 per site|
* Each connector is counted as a unit towards minimum of 20 chargers if each connector can charge a vehicle at the same time.
Funding for EVAFIDI has been released under the 2016 and 2017 budget, which provides $96.4M over six years (April 2016 to March 2022). An additional $130M of funding over five years (April 2019 to March 2024) has been approved during the budget for 2019.
Investments under EVAFIDI go beyond the national highway system. They focus on Level 2 EV charging station installation at various places of business, such as workplaces, commercial and multi-unit residential buildings, as well as several public areas. 📢
Level 3 EV chargers (fast chargers with 50kW power output and above) will receive up to 50% of the total project cost capped at $50,000 per fast charger. The following EV chargers are also eligible for funding if placed with a level 3 fast charger as a supplementary charging option on the same site:
– Level 3 EV fast chargers with a power output from 20 kW to 49 kW; will receive up to 50% of the total project cost, capped at $15,000 per fast charger.
– Level 2 EV chargers at 208/240V with power outputs from 3.2 kW to 19.2 kW; will receive up to 50% of the total project costs, capped at $5,000 per connector.
NRCan’s contribution under EVAFIDI will be limited to a maximum of $5M per project. 👍
Local Government Subsidies
Currently, three provinces in Canada offer incentives above and beyond the federal ZEV purchase incentive program: Québec, Ontario, and British Columbia.
The province of Quebec offers various subsidies for the installation of chargers under its Branché au travail program.
Under the program, 50% of the acquisition and installation cost (up to $5,000 per connector or charger) will be covered.
Chargers that can be installed are either Level 1 (120 volts) or Level 2 (240 volts). However, the charger to be installed must be approved by a registered organization and must also be used only for charging electric cars. The business establishment must also have a dedicated parking spot just for EVs.
All businesses in the province of Quebec are eligible under the program. However, only companies or corporations can purchase or lease a charging station for their place of business. Charging stations bought or leased by individuals must be installed in the individual’s place of residence.
Under the province’s CleanBC program, British Columbia workplaces are eligible for reimbursement for purchase and installation costs of new Level 2 charging equipment of up 50% (a maximum of $14,000 after pre-approval).
Each Level 2 charging station can be reimbursed for $2,000 for each single port station. Dual-port stations count as two stations, which means it could receive up to $4,000 reimbursement. Each organization can receive reimbursement for a maximum of four sites. 🔋
Costs that go into the purchase and installation of EV chargers are covered under the program. Those that won’t be covered are the following:
- Installation of non-EV charging infrastructure;
- Painting of parking area;
- Charging infrastructure already required by law;
- Fees related to property admin.
All British Columbia workplaces with a minimum of 5 employees are eligible for the program. Each workplace must have dedicated parking for its employees. Newly-installed charging stations rebated under the program must only be used by employees and only during working hours. 👮
Although rebates for EV sales have been stopped, subsidies for EV charging infrastructure installation are still in place in the province.
Under its program, those who are eligible are entitled to receive a rebate of up to 50% of the purchase and installation cost (up to $1,000) for a Level 2 charger. There is one condition for receiving these rebates, however.
To be eligible, the charging station must be built to correspond to vehicles that have already received the provincial rebate for purchasing an EV.
Today, every single province and territory in Canada are eligible for at least one EV charger installation subsidy. But many are available for a limited time-applications for the current round of ZEVIP close on xxx and applications for EVAFIDI close on xxx. Businesses, municipalities, and fleets that plan to install EV chargers sometime in the next few years should act now to take advantage of these limited-time offers.