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BC Hydro creates east-to-west BC charging network

BC Hydro fast charging point in Cranbrook, BC

BC Hydro’s network is now made up of 58 charging stations

BC Hydro has completed the second phase of its electric vehicle fast charging network, allowing drivers to travel across BC from the Alberta border to Tofino – and the next phase will connect drivers north.

The second phase includes 28 new stations, in addition to the 30 that were completed in 2016. There are 13 new stations in the Lower Mainland and two new stations at the Britton Creek rest area on the Coquihalla Highway, allowing drivers to quickly charge up before heading to the Southern Interior – or to the Kootenays. The stations also connect drivers from Horseshoe Bay to the west coast of Vancouver Island.

BC Hydro is planning its next phase, which will connect drivers to the north from Kamloops to Prince George – and eventually to Prince Rupert.

“Our government is making zero emission transportation choices more accessible for all British Columbians,” said Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources Minister Michelle Mungall. “BC already has one of Canada’s largest charging networks, but now motorists can travel all the way from Golden to Tofino using these new fast chargers.”

BC Hydro’s fast charging network can charge an EV’s battery to 80% in 30 minutes or less. The network is designed to provide drivers with charging options when they need them – helping reduce the ‘range anxiety’ many drivers feel about long road trips.

“We’re very pleased to provide this network of fast chargers to encourage electric vehicle drivers to get out and explore BC this summer,” said BC Hydro president and chief operating officer Chris O’Riley. “Electric vehicles are a great option for British Columbians looking to reduce their impact on the environment because we generate 98% clean electricity. They also help lower their driving costs by around 75%.”

As the number of EVs on BC roads grows, charging sessions at BC Hydro’s existing stations have increased 63% over the last year year. Between May 2017 and May 2018 there were over 22,000 charges at these stations.

This represents around 941,000 km of driving and the equivalent of approximately 364,000 kg in carbon dioxide emissions savings. There are currently around 9,000 EVs on the road in BC and that number is expected to rise to 300,000 by 2030.

Source: BC Hydro

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