Starting next year, the British Columbia government is kicking in yet another incentive program to coax people to get off their gas guzzlers. Starting next year, if you are in B.C., you will be able to get a federal incentive of $5,000, a B.C. incentive of (up to) $3,000 plus the “Scrap It” incentive of $6,000. The "Scrap It” means you can trade in your car for a minimum of $6,000 as long as you can drive it onto the lot. Because of these incentives, electric vehicles (EVs) are as common as house flies out there.
My P.E.I. wife says that folks here aren’t that interested in electric vehicles. Spotting an electric vehicle here is a rarity. So, that’s the first step. If more EVs are spotted on the roads, more and more Islanders will be curious about them, and the more and more Islanders will walk into showrooms. If the P.E.I. government can sweeten the deal the way B.C. has stepped up, and if the P.E.I. government can make charging stations a priority, and if they can throw in other incentives like free downtown parking for EVs, we will certainly see the beginnings of an electric revolution here.
The civilized world has declared the planet is in a climate catastrophe. Switching to an electric car won’t save the world, but it will make a difference here on P.E.I. (as an example of one person who made the leap). That’s how you make change. That’s how you, as an individual, can make a difference.
We have $57 million in surplus funds, and the government is squabbling about free drivers licences. This is a great opportunity to step up and support electric vehicles. We just need the political will.