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NEIA seeking partners in pursuit of a province-wide electric vehicle fast-charging network

For Immediate Release
December 20, 2018

The Newfoundland and Labrador Environmental Industry Association (NEIA) is seeking partners to help pursue the development of a province-wide electric vehicle (EV) fast-charging network.

“Experts forecast that within ten years the upfront cost of EVs will reach parity with internal combustion cars,” says Kieran Hanley, NEIA’s Executive Director. “Given that the operational cost of EVs is much cheaper in terms of refueling and maintenance, it is expected that a large percentage of consumers at that time will choose the more cost-effective option.”

But Hanley says that the infrastructure does not exist in Newfoundland and Labrador to support increased numbers of EVs on the province’s roads. “The number one question those curious about EVs always ask is how far across the province they can drive,’” Hanley says, “and though batteries and ranges continue to improve with each passing year, the fact remains that in order to facilitate longer-distance driving in this province we need the infrastructure – and that means a network of fast-charging stations.” Hanley says such infrastructure either exists or is being built in jurisdictions right across Canada, and that the lack of such activity in Newfoundland and Labrador is a barrier to EV adoption.

“Transportation represents over 30% of our province’s total greenhouse gas emissions; if we are going to reduce our contribution to climate change, we have to take action in this space.” Hanley says that with the province’s electricity soon to be almost entirely generated from renewable sources, Newfoundland and Labrador is perfectly positioned for broader adoption of EVs. “On the one hand we should do what we can to encourage residents to purchase EVs. On the other hand, we have to be prepared for the change in consumer habits that will occur when EV prices approach parity with traditional vehicles. Either way, we need to be investing in fast-charging EV infrastructure.”

There are funding mechanisms available that may be able to support the implementation of a province-wide EV fast-charging network, Hanley says, but investment will still be required beyond government sources. “The existence of the infrastructure will help accelerate the adoption of the technology, but in these early stages we need leaders able and willing to make an initial investment.” Hanley is encouraging corporations, SMEs, and organizations interested in supporting the implementation of a province-wide EV network to contact him at kieran@neia.org.

NEIA is a not-for-profit association of businesses that promotes the development of clean technology and the growth of the green economy in Newfoundland and Labrador. NEIA has over 200 members. More information can be found at http://www.neia.org.

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Media Contact:
Kieran Hanley
kieran@neia.org

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