Sidney and Central Saanich record the second and third-highest EV ownership rate per 1,000 residents. (Black Press Media file)

Vancouver Island’s southeast corner plugged into to electric cars

Saltspring, Sidney and Central Saanich lead the charge as B.C. doubles electric vehicle ownership

New figures confirm the southeast corner of Vancouver Island drives the way it votes.

Saanich/Gulf Islands, home to Canada’s first Green Party MP was also one of the power points of electric vehicle (EV) ownership, which more than doubled across British Columbia since last year.

Figures from the Victoria Electric Vehicle Association (VicEVA) show Sidney and Central Saanich rank second and third in terms of EV ownership per 1,000 residents with 14 EVs and 13 EVs respectively, behind Salt Spring Island with 21 EVs.

RELATED: Saanich bylaw sparks EV charging infrastructure requirements in new builds

The figures — which VicEVA acquired through ICBC — show EV ownership in the region encompassing Vancouver Island and the Southern Gulf Islands rose 98 per cent to 5,613 from 2,842 in March 2019.

Saanich records the highest absolute EV ownership in the region with 1,291 vehicles (up 91 per cent) followed by Oak Bay with 460 vehicles (up 92 per cent) and the area that includes Mill Bay and Cowichan with 440 vehicles (up 100 per cent). Across British Columbia, the number of EVs irose to 29,385 by March 31, 2020 from 13,727 in March of 2019, an increase of 114 per cent.

Sidney’s ownership rate rose by 68 per cent to 333, while Central Saanich’s ownership rate rose 97 per cent — the same rate of increase for the area that includes Langford, Colwood and Highlands. Victoria rose 87 per cent.

“Sidney, we suspect we don’t know, could be influenced by the availability of low cost EVs, because a major importer of those [Motorize] is located in Sidney,” Jim Hindson, a VicEVA board member, when asked about the strong numbers for Sidney and Central Saanich. “We suspect that that may have some influence and could also influence Central Saanich.”

Another possible influence is the savings EVs offer, especially for commuters to downtown Victoria. “Anybody who is commuting from Sidney to downtown Victoria might spend $300, $400 a month on gas, and getting an EV drops the cost [of fuel] to $12 a month or something like that,” he said, adding EVs cost significantly less to maintain.

RELATED: Capital region residents dominate Vancouver Island electric vehicle ownership

Overall, Hindson describes the growth as “great” in predicting additional growth against the backdrop of growing environmental awareness. “It’s growing exponentially and I’m sure we will see an increase next year as well,” he said.

But room for improvement remains. Hindson said his association is encouraging municipalities including Sidney to promote more charging opportunities in private buildings.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Electric vehicles

Just Posted

WATCH: Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock pedals into Parksville Qualicum Beach

Volunteer LeMoine doesn’t get locks shaved but still finds a way to raise funds

COLUMN: Reflecting on the 32nd anniversary of Canada’s apology to Japanese-Canadians

Japanese-Canadians an integral part of Tofino and Ucluelet’s history.

Side Bay access confirmed as North Island forest service roads get a minor facelift

Remote beach route no longer ‘up in the bureaucratic air’ thanks to COVID-19 recovery funding

Vancouver Island parents say schools not appropriate voting stations

Elections B.C. says site of polling stations not yet determined, working with Dr. Henry’s office

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

Three Vancouver Island photographers place in BC SPCA 2020 Wild-in-Focus photography contest

Out of 956+ submissions province wide, both winners place in separate categories

Victoria gets new collegiate baseball team, training facility

Golden Tide coach wants to see as many local kids play for the HarbourCats as possible

Hospice worker and patient butt heads in upcoming Nanaimo theatre production

Yellow Point Drama Group presents ‘Grace and Glorie’ at Cedar Community Hall

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

Neighbours concerned about proposed apartment complex on Island Highway

City says it’s early in the process, still, and residents will ‘absolutely’ have their concerns heard

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Liberals reach deal with NDP on COVID-19 aid bill, likely averting election

NDP and the Liberals have reached an agreement on COVID-19 sick-leave

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Most Read