Conservation Council calls on N.B. to deliver on promise for electric vehicle incentives

Traditional Land of Wabanaki People/Fredericton – The Conservation Council of New Brunswick is pleased to see today’s announcement from the federal government that it will accelerate its commitment to 100 per cent zero-emission vehicle sales by 2035 (down from 2040), with interim mandatory targets for 2025 and 2030.

While the federal government could have set its mandatory 100 per cent zero-emissions target for this decade, the Conservation Council’s Dr. Louise Comeau, Director of Climate and Energy Solutions, said it’s also time for New Brunswick to step up and deliver on its promises to get more New Brunswickers behind the wheel of an electric vehicle.

“We are falling behind,” Comeau said. “New Brunswick now stands alone in Eastern Canada as the only province without a rebate incentive for electric vehicles. The government has been promising an incentive for five years—it’s time to deliver.”

All of New Brunswick’s neighbours—Nova Scotia, P.E.I., Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec, and Maine—offer a rebate for electric vehicle purchases. Most run between $2,500 and $3,000.

The province’s Climate Action Plan committed to getting 2,500 electric vehicles on the road by 2020 and 20,000 by 2030. There is $36-million available to the province from carbon pricing revenue.

“It’s time New Brunswick spent its carbon pricing revenue on an incentive to buy electric vehicles and cut transportation emissions. The province’s own target for electric vehicles is inadequate, and we are not even close to meeting it,” Comeau said.

The Conservation Council’s goal of between 140,000 and 150,000 EVs on the road by 2030 could be achieved with incentives and regulation to phase out the sale of internal combustion vehicles.

Emissions from road transportation – that includes family vehicles, public transit, garbage trucks, and transport trucks – contributed 23 per cent of New Brunswick’s 12.4 million tonnes of annual greenhouse gas emissions in 2019 (light duty cars and trucks generate almost 70% of that amount). 

“It is not fair that New Brunswickers who want to purchase an electric vehicle have less support to do so than other people in our region or other parts of the country. We need to make it easier to buy electric and to encourage our local dealerships to bring more of them onto the lot.”

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To arrange an interview, contact:

Jon MacNeill, Communications Director, Conservation Council of New Brunswick | jon.macneill@conservationcouncil.ca | 506-238-3539

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