The opening of Petro-Canada’s western-most charging station is a crucial moment of transition for the nation’s largest gasoline company — and a landmark event in Canadian clean transportation
In a ceremony on Tuesday just north of Victoria, B.C., Petro-Canada unveiled the final station in its “Electric Highway,” a network of EV fast chargers that spans the width of the nation. This coast-to-coast charging network, which currently features over 40 stations along the Trans-Canada highway, is the first of its kind in Canada.
The chargers, which are free to use until the new year, are DC fast chargers provided with the universal standard CCS and CHAdeMO connectors.
“The new purpose of our company is to provide trusted energy in order to enhance people’s lives and to care for each other and for the Earth,” said Mark Little, president and CEO of Suncor, Petro-Canada’s parent company, at the ceremony.
“We know the world is changing, and as a result of that, we’ve set a goal to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 30% before 2030.”
The Electric Highway project has received $4.6 million in funding from the Federal Government, through Natural Resources Canada’s Electric Vehicle and Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Deployment Initiative.
A huge step
Well-developed charging infrastructure has proven to increase consumer confidence and bolster EV ownership in both rural and urban Canadian areas. As such, the completion of a network of chargers along the nation’s largest highway is a huge step in motivating consumers to go electric, regardless of their location.
It also demonstrates a recognition from the nation’s largest gasoline company that the nature of the transportation industry is changing quickly, and that it is crucial for petroleum companies to change with it.
The ceremony also featured remarks from Wilf Steimle, president of the Electric Vehicle Society.
“I’ve had the honour of attending many charging station openings during the past decade,” said Steimle. “Each new station represented an important step toward supporting electric transportation. None, however, have been as significant as what we’re celebrating today.”
“This network is quite possibly the longest non-proprietary charging network in the world. And, it was built in less than a year. For the electric car owners in Canada, this means they can now travel from coast-to-coast as quickly and conveniently as they would have in a traditional car.”