WWF-Canada announced the launch of Transportation rEVolution, a program aimed at reducing Canada’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from transportation by encouraging the use of electric vehicles (EVs).
A recent Environics study commissioned by WWF-Canada showed that while Canadians overwhelmingly support EVs (73 percent support government actions to promote electric cars), they are unclear on the environmental value of EVs.
The research found that just 26 percent of Canadians strongly agree that vehicle emissions in Canada are a major source of climate change, and 36 percent of Canadians are unsure about the impact of an EV on reducing a household’s GHG emissions. WWF’s Transportation rEVevolution will work to provide accurate and useful information to help Canadians make informed decisions about their transportation choices.
Based on modeling completed in WWF’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Potential of Electric Vehicles: 2025 Outlook Report, WWF has set the ambitious target of 600,000 EVs – accounting for 10 percent of vehicle sales – on Canada’s roads by 2020.
To achieve this goal, WWF said it will work with governments, businesses and individuals to:
— highlight environmental benefits of EVs
— support improved access to EVs and EV infrastructure
— achieve competitive pricing with conventional vehicles
— expand travel freedom for EV users with infrastructure and travel partnership options
— provide Canadians with positive EV information and experiences
Road transportation accounts for 19 percent of Canada’s GHG emissions, according to the 2010 national GHG inventory report issued by Environment Canada. Emissions from this sector have increased by 39 percent since 1990, second only to GHG emissions growth from the Canadian oil sands industry. According to the “GHGenius model” of Natural Resource Canada and with today’s electricity generation infrastructure, EVs in Canada have the potential to reduce life cycle GHG emissions per vehicle per kilometre travelled by more than 60 percent over conventional gasoline vehicles.
The Environics study found that:
— 73 percent of Canadians would support government actions to encourage changing to electric vehicles through individual incentives; 65 percent through corporate incentives.
— 62 percent of Canadians agree that knowing a company uses EVs in their fleet would make them feel more positively about that company.
— 59 percent of Canadians would be interested in renting an EV if the opportunity arose.
— 47 percent of Canadians have no experience with EVs; just four per cent say they have driven one, while seven per cent have ridden in an EV.
— Close to 6 in 10 Canadians do not use any sustainable transportation methods on a regular basis.