My name is Piper. I am the co-pilot on this low impact road trip.With my family, Buddy Boyd and Barbara Hetherington, we are travelling across Canada in our new Chevy Bolt EV.

 

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Frequently Asked Questions

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What kind of car are you driving?

We are driving a Chevy Bolt, which is 100% electric.

The Bolt EV was named Motor Trend's 2017 Car of the Year ,as well as Green Car Journal's 2017 Green Car of the Year. The Chevy Bolt can last up to 383 kilometres on a single charge, can go from zero to sixty in 6.5 seconds, offers 226lb/ft of torque and is an affordable subcompact vehicle.

How far can you go? What is the range of your car?

The Bolt EV's five module battery pack that forms the floor of the car gives a maximum range of 238 miles. For most commuters , going 238 miles between charges would mean only needing to plug in once per week. If you are on a road trip and need to top up, the car  will find a Fast Charge station where you can get 90 miles of charge in 30 minutes.

Is having to charge an electric car inconvenient?

No actually it is easier and less messy that filling up with gasoline. It is also less expensive. the majority of charging happens at home overnight when the  cost of electricity is low. the time it takes to recharge is based on the level or speed of charging.

Level 1 (120 Volts/15 Amps) 

All fully electric cars and plug-in hybrids come standard with a cord set that plugs into a regular wall socket. Level 1 charges slow, but ensures that no matter where you are, you can always recharge.

Level 2 (240 Volts/30 Amps)

The most common charging station is Level 2. Easily installed in your garage or driveway, at storefronts and in parking lots, Level 2 stations can fully recharge your electric car in 8 to 10 hours. Most of the stations you see in public spaces are Level 2. 

Level 3 Charging (480 Volts/100 Amps)

Level 3 stations are often called "DC-Quick Chargers". DC-Quick Chargers will fully recharge your electric car in 25-30 minutes. Only fully electric cars have access to Level 3 charging. There are three types of Level 3:

  • CHAdeMO is a Japanese standard used by Hyundai, Nissan, Kia and Mitsubishi

  • SAE Combo is a European/North American standard used by BMW, Chevrolet, Ford and Volkswagen

  • Tesla Supercharger is used by Tesla Motors. All Tesla vehicles can be purchased with adapters for the other two types

How do you know where the charging stations are?

There are thousands of EV chargers located in communities across Canada. You can find locations of charging stations on the CAA website or their are numerous Apps that you can download that help you to find the next charging stations, such as PlugShare, SunCountry Highway and Open Charge Map .

Are there any rebates or incentives available?

Yes, check what your province offers.

The province of British Columbia has renewed funding for the Clean Energy Vehicle (CEVforBC) Point of Sale Incentive Program. The new program includes point-of-sale incentives for battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, investments in charging infrastructure and hydrogen fuelling infrastructure, additional support for fleets to adopt CEVs, and investments in research, training and outreach.

This program is intended to encourage and accelerate the adoption of clean energy vehicles in British Columbia for both their environment and economic benefits. Increased use of clean energy vehicles like electric vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles will help shift spending on imported transportation fuels to locally made electricity and hydrogen, and will help stimulate jobs and economic development in the local clean technology sector.

The CEV Program vision is to stimulate the market such that by 2020, 5% of new light duty vehicle purchases in British Columbia are clean energy vehicles.

This program  is a component of the Ministry’s Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund, designed to support government’s energy, economic, environmental and greenhouse gas reduction priorities and advance British Columbia’s clean energy sector.

Ontario is making it easier for people across the province to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and switch to an electric vehicle (EV) by further enhancing its Electric Vehicle Incentive Program (EVIP).

Part of Ontario's Climate Change Action Plan, and in effect as of Jan. 1, 2017, the updated EVIP: 

  • Removes the cap limiting EV incentives to 30 per cent of the manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP)

  • Eliminates the $3,000 cap on incentives for EVs fully run on battery power and priced between $75,000 and $150,000, which enable long-range, zero-emission travel and have less environmental impact than lower priced plug-in hybrids

  • Continues to exclude EVs with an MSRP of $150,000 and above from qualifying for incentives

  • Offers incentives only on vehicles produced by automakers who are partners in Ontario's new Electric and Hydrogen Vehicle Advancement Partnership (EHVAP).

B.C. Scrap-It offers cash to a limited number of consumers who buy a new electric car, and take an internal-combustion car off the road.

Are electric cars better than gasoline cars for the environment?

Electric cars are better for the environment than gasoline cars.Electric cars produce fewer greenhouse gases. Although the cars can cause environmental damage when getting power from coal-producing plants, electric cars would dramatically reduce the amount of greenhouse gasses when powered by plants that don’t produce greenhouse gases. Even when generated from coal-burning plants, electric cars would reduce carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 22 percent when compared to cars.

What is Zero Waste?

Zero Waste is a philosophy, a target, and it is a call to action that aims to bring an end to the current take, make, and waste mentality of human society.

Zero Waste addresses the entire social system of how we make, consume, and dispose of our “stuff”.

Zero Waste encompasses the principles of conserving resources, minimizing pollution, maximizing employment opportunities, and providing the greatest degree of economic self-reliance.

The internationally recognized definition of Zero Waste is:“Zero Waste is a goal that is ethical, economical, efficient and visionary, to guide people in changing their lifestyles and practices to emulate sustainable natural cycles, where all discarded materials are designed to become resources for others to use.
Zero Waste means designing and managing products and processes to systematically avoid and eliminate the volume and toxicity of waste and materials, conserve and recover all resources, and not burn or bury them.
Implementing Zero Waste will eliminate all discharges to land, water or air that are a threat to planetary, human, animal or plant health.”

What is Zero Waste Canada?

We are a grass roots organization dedicated to helping end the age of wasting through better design & education! Zero Waste Canada (ZWC) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that promotes solid waste solutions that eliminate the use of landfills and waste-to-energy plants. ZWC works with all levels of government for responsible resource management and policies, legislation and initiatives that eliminate waste and support continuous reuse of resources. ZWC provides resource management demonstration projects and education, and is a reliable go-to resource that collaboratively promotes social, environmental and economic well-being.

Barb and I are directors of Zero Waste Canada and part of our goal of this road trip is to promote Zero Waste as we journey across Canada. We will be learning and writing about the successes and challenges that regular Canadians face. We will also be showing a low impact road trip holiday is possible.