Federal Budget 2017 – Infrastructure and innovation – Electrification and EVs

In continuity with the 2016 budget, the 2017 federal budget announced yesterday reflects the priorities related to infrastructure and innovation. The choices made up to now for transportation electrification are in line with Electric Mobility Canada’s recommendations included in its Roadmap.

Continued infrastructure deployment
The additional allocated investment to electric vehicles and alternative transportation fuel infrastructure starting in 2018-2019 of $30M / year for 4 years, totalizing $120M is welcomed to pursue the deployment of DCFC in strategic areas, as investment in charging infrastructure is essential for increasing the adoption of EVs.

Leading by example
Also, Budget 2017 proposes to provide $13.5 million over five years, starting in 2017–18, to Natural Resources Canada to provide expertise to other federal departments with respect to energy efficiency measures, including the best approaches to reduce or eliminate emissions from vehicle fleets.

Smart cities / Smart transportation
The Smart Cities Challenge, to be launched, will invite cities across Canada to develop Smart Cities Plans, together with local governments, citizens, businesses and civil society.  It is supported by $300 million over 11 years with investments in public transit, green infrastructure, and social infrastructure.   EMC intends to present concrete ways to include smart transportation electrification into the design of the program.

Innovation
In its Roadmap, EMC made it clear that a re-alignment of various federal funding programs aimed at industry, academics and collaborators with a focus on promising clusters with cutting edge technologies, services, and solutions were key to maximizing success of the emerging Canadian electric transportation industry. EMC supports the 2017 budget dedicated to innovation, and reiterates that all members can play an active role in many fields of innovative technologies and services, to contribute to economic growth.

Budget 2017 proposes to create a new $1.26 billion five-year Strategic Innovation Fund to consolidate and simplify existing business innovation programming, in particular the Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative, Technology Demonstration Program, Automotive Innovation Fund and Automotive Supplier Innovation Program.  In allocating this funding, the Government will look to accelerate areas of economic strength, strengthen and expand the role of Canadian firms in regional and global supply chains, support economic strategies, and attract investment that creates new, well-paying jobs.

A fund of $56.9 million for Transport Canada is allocated to continue developing greenhouse gas regulations in the marine, rail, aviation and vehicle sectors.

Autonomous vehicles
The federal government is committed to:

  • Developing regulations for the safe adoption of connected and autonomous vehicles and unmanned air vehicles.
  • Working collaboratively with industry, provinces, territories and municipalities to establish pilot projects (e.g., to evaluate new unmanned air vehicle technologies at a new test centre).

These items have an allocated $76.7 million over five years, starting in 2017–18.

Other federal areas of actions
The development of a clean fuel standard to reduce emissions from fuels used in transportation, building and industrial sectors is underway, with more details to come.

Increasing EV adoption now
To make a strong difference in this transition period ahead of us, EMC will again defend the pressing need for awareness and communication actions, for additional federal incentives for EVs, and for the deployment of workplace charging, and direct investments to transit authorities for commercially available e-buses. EMC looks forward to working with the Federal Government on the Canadian EV Strategy for 2018 thus ensuring that synergies are translated into an acceleration of EV deployment in Canada.

Click here for the 2017 Federal Budget.

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