The development of a charging infrastructure, codes and standards, and policies, as well as public education and consumer acceptance are among the steps necessary to achieve the timely and effective commercialisation of electric vehicles (EVs) in Canada, according to a new electric vehicle technology roadmap for the country.

Governments and industry must work together on ensuring that these steps are taken, continues the roadmap, adding that the most important of these activities is energy storage, with progress toward the widespread use of EVs depending above all on the one factor of increasing the amount of electrical energy that can be stored in a given volume or weight on board a vehicle, thereby extending electric traction’s range.

The roadmap, which covers all electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, is intended to provide the strategic direction to ensure the development and adoption of EVs in Canada, while building a robust industry. The target is at least 500,000 EVs in the country by 2018.

Key recommendations in the roadmap are to make timely and substantial investments in Canadian development and manufacture of EVs and in energy storage devices, and to consider supplementing federal, provincial and territorial mechanisms to promote the development, public acceptance and procurement of personal and commercial EVs, and the installation of the charging infrastructure.

Options for the charging infrastructure should be tested in each major region of Canada, including smart charging and vehicle-tohome and vehicle-to-grid arrangements, and vehicle use should be tested in real-world operation to assess the reliability and durability of energy storage and other components.