June 16th, 2024

Funding secured for electric vehicle initiative

By Gillian Slade on August 15, 2018.


The region is a step closer to having highly efficient electric vehicle charging stations, thanks to recent funding from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

The City of Medicine Hat received $750,000 for the initiative under the Southern Alberta Clean Transportation Network.

“We are quite happy that we have received this because there were about 44 communities (that) applied,” said Mayor Ted Clugston.

Those with electric vehicles currently have to plan ahead to ensure they are able to reach a destination and recharge the battery before returning home.

“They can’t go on longer journeys in case they can’t charge,” said Clugston. “This money is going to solve that along, I think, the Highway 3 corridor.”

The city is also awaiting an announcement on provincial funding for this initiative, according to an email from Sandra Blyth, business support officer for land and business support.

Ultimately the electric charging stations will be across the whole of southern Alberta, she said.

The collaboration between Southern Alberta Clean Transportation Network and the city aims to reduce emissions with electric vehicle charging stations from “peaks to prairies” to establish and further the economic advantage of this region.

The initiative is expected to have a positive impact on tourism, the clean technology industry, car sales, battery storage and expanded services, a press release states.

Earlier this year the city had estimated the total cost for all electric vehicle charging stations to be about $2.1 million, with the FCM paying roughly half and the province paying half.

FCM and the federal government recently announced more than $31 million for 27 initiatives like this across Canada under two umbrellas: The Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program and the Green Municipal Fund.

Earlier this year the city contributed to an initiative that includes a micro-grid at Medicine Hat College. There will also be some solar panels put on the canopy at the Cultural Centre and an electric vehicle charging station, said Clugston.

The News reported late last year that Medicine Hat College had received a $215,000 provincial grant for the solar panel canopy. It would provide energy to charge vehicles, the college system and act as a teaching lab for trades and technology students.

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