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BC Hydro wraps up phase one of EV charging station network


September 26, 2016
By Renée Francoeur
Photo courtesy BC Hydro.

September 26, 2016 – The electric vehicle charging network in B.C. has reached a milestone with the completion of a BC Hydro pilot project to install 30 direct current (DC) fast charging stations throughout the province. Construction of the last station, located in Vernon, was completed this month.

“British Columbia is a leader in clean-energy vehicles, with the largest public charging infrastructure network in Canada,” said Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett.

The DC fast charging stations are key components in meeting our goals of being a sustainable community and ensuring we meet the growing demand for electric vehicles in our city and in the province”, added Vernon mayor Akbal Mund.

Fast charging stations can charge an electric vehicle’s battery to 80% in just 30 minutes, BC Hydro says. The utility has been installing the stations since 2012 with support from the provincial and federal governments and in partnership with municipalities and regional districts throughout the province.

“BC Hydro is focused on removing barriers for our customers who want to own an electric vehicle,” said Keith Anderson, vice-president, Customer Service, BC Hydro. “Our electricity rates are among the lowest in North America, which means by switching to an electric vehicle you could save 75% on fuel costs.”

The 30 fast charging stations connect drivers from the Lower Mainland to Merritt and Kamloops, up to Whistler, Vancouver Island and the Southern Interior.

It is estimated that 300,000 electric vehicles will be on the road in B.C. by 2030, BC Hydro reports.