BC Hydro bids to raise EV charging fees
By DE StaffGeneral Automotive
Customers object to utility’s aim to charge by time spent charging rather than electricity used.
VANCOUVER – BC Hydro wants to raise rates at public charging stations for electric vehicles, and EV drivers are less than happy about the potential rate hike.
Late last month, the Crown corporation applied to the BC Utilities Commission to raise public charging rates by around 15 per cent.
The company says the increase will cover the costs of operating the stations and the power they use over 10 years, as electric vehicle adoption increases.
But comment letters received by the commission so far want the rate hikes denied, with E-V drivers wanting the stations to charge by the amount of power consumed instead of per minute.
Blair Qualey, president and CEO of the New Car Dealers Association of BC, says he understands that BC Hydro needs to recoup costs like any other business. But he says the timing and optics of the rate hikes are less than ideal since consumers in the province are already being squeezed by high housing and food costs.
Qualey says its important to incentivize EV ownership and remove impediments that may steer people away from buying electric cars.