Once a distant dream on the horizon, Electric Vehicles (EV) are becoming a realistic purchase for buyers due to increased incentives by the province of Ontario.

Ontario is leading the way for electric cars, with their revamp of the modernized Electric Vehicle (EV) Incentive program. The $20 million budget for the program is a part of Ontario’s Green Investment Fund, which has dedicated $325 million to help mitigate climate change.

The purchase rebate of an Electric Vehicle has been increased from a $5000 to $8000 rebate to a $6000 to $10,000 rebate. The owners of the EV’s will also have an opportunity to receive an additional $3000 if they have a vehicle with a larger battery capacity, and additional incentives will be offered to EVs that have more than five kilowatt-hours on their batteries. An additional $5000 will be provided for vehicles with more than five seats.

There are about 5,800 EVs driving along Ontario’s roads and the updated budget is bound to raise these numbers. Dedication to climate change programs such as the Electric Vehicles incentive is imperative for Ontario to reach its greenhouse gas 80 per cent gas reduction target by 2050.

“With a growing population and expanding urban regions, transportation emissions pose one of our province’s greatest challenges in achieving our ambitious greenhouse gas pollution reduction targets,” said Premier of Ontario, Kathleen Wynne in a statement. “By making it easier for people to switch to an electric vehicle, we are taking an important step in our fight against climate change.”

Globally, Ontario is leading the way in EV incentives, providing one of the highest rebates worldwide. In the United States, a maximum $7,500 incentive is being offered for all-electric and plug-in hybrids purchased after 2010 in the form of a tax credit. In Ireland, EVs are provided tax relief up to € 5,000. Plug-in cars are eligible for € 2,500. In Sweden, the one-time “super green car premium” of 4,500 Euros is offered, but will only be provided to 5000 electric vehicles.

The $20 million Ontario investment will go towards creating a network of fast-charging stations across the province. The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has implemented the Electric Vehicle Chargers Ontario program (EVCO), a competitive application-based grant program for public and private sector businesses to encourage investment. There is no cap on the amount of funding a company can request, which means there is potential for the cost of a charging station to be covered in it’s entirety, creating financial motivation for larger businesses. The application closes on Feb. 12.

Ontario Minister of Transportation, Steven Del Duca, is looking forward to the increased funding for these programs. “Providing better incentives for electric vehicles will help consumers and businesses make the transition to more sustainable vehicles, and keeps Ontario at the forefront of the clean, green economy,” he said.


Kaeleigh Phillips is Women's Post sustainability coordinator. She specializes in writing about issues relating to the environment, including renewable energy, cycling, and vegan recipes!

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