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Province increases rebates for commercial EVs

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 11:27 PST, Wed January 13, 2021

Businesses wanting to reduce air pollution and save on fuel costs can access more in provincial rebates through the CleanBC Specialty-Use Vehicle Incentive (SUVI) and Commercial Vehicle Pilot (CVP) programs.

"We're offering stronger support for BC businesses to go electric by doubling existing rebates and adding new offers for commercial vehicles," said Energy Minister Bruce Ralston. "Through CleanBC, we're making cleaner options more affordable to help businesses recover and save on costs while doing their part to reduce air pollution."

The SUVI program is receiving $31 million in funding through StrongerBC, the province's economic recovery plan, to double the maximum rebates for medium and heavy-duty vehicles available for businesses, local and regional governments, public sector organizations and non-profit organizations in their adoption of specialty-use zero-emission vehicles. Those purchasing eligible vehicles will have access to 33 per cent of the cost, up to a maximum of $100,000 per vehicle, up from $50,000 maximum.

Vehicles eligible for SUVI rebates include medium- and heavy-duty vehicles such as battery electric or hydrogen-fuelled passenger buses, airport and port service vehicles and heavy-duty transport trucks, as well as smaller specialty-use vehicles such as motorcycles, cargo e-bikes, and low-speed utility trucks.

To further support one of BC's most impacted sectors, tourism companies, including restaurants and other hospitality businesses, are eligible for double the rebates and can access 66 per cent of the cost of an eligible medium- or heavy-duty vehicle, such as a food delivery vehicle or shuttle bus, up to a maximum of $100,000 per vehicle.

"Our government is committed to supporting the tourism sector by capitalizing on forward-thinking initiatives of our CleanBC plan to rebuild this resilient, but hard-hit, industry," said Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. "Investing in 21st-century infrastructure through rebates for electric vehicles will mean more tourism businesses can adopt cleaner, greener transportation options for when it is safe to welcome visitors back to super, natural British Columbia."

Organizations in BC can also access $11 million in support for piloting unique or large deployments of medium- and heavy-duty or very large electric vehicles (EVs), such as domestic air, marine or rail transportation through the Commercial Vehicle Pilot program. Eligible applicants can compete to receive up to one-third of total costs in rebates for vehicles and charging or refuelling infrastructure.

"We're working with B.C. businesses to ensure they have the support they need to reduce emissions and build a strong recovery from the COVID-19 economic downturn - especially those most affected in the tourism sector," said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy. "Our government is making clean, specialized vehicles more affordable for businesses to encourage investments that support jobs, fight climate change and help save on fuel and maintenance costs through CleanBC."

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