Canada home to cleanest energy grids for EVs

Canada is home to 70 per cent of the 10 best locations in North America for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by driving an electric car, according to a new report by the 2 Degrees Institute.

The study measures the impact of driving an EV in North America and the benefits this has on climate change.

Quebec is revealed as having one of the cleanest energy grids, thanks in large part to its near 100 per cent use of hydro electricity. This type of power only emits 3 grams of CO2e for each kWh of energy produced.

Canada also encompasses one of the worst — or dirtiest — energy grids in North America due to Alberta’s strong use of coal. The province pulls more than two thirds of its energy (grid) from coal, which emits one kilogram of CO2e for every kWh of energy produced.

Making EVs beneficial for reducing emissions in Alberta seems less impactful than in provinces like Quebec, but the advantages are still worth considering, according to the report.

“What surprised us is that, even if Alberta’s power generation system remains as high-carbon as it is now for the life of the car, driving an EV in that province will still reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 25 per cent,” said professor James Pawley, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Drivers that live in provinces with an energy grid that is less “green” than others can still have an impact on CO2 emissions by driving an EV. And if they choose to charge their vehicle using power from solar panels on their home roof, this can help reduce their driving emissions by 85 per cent, according to the news release.

Read the full report here.


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