Adam Thorn, Director of Transportation Policy, said while passenger electric cars, trucks and SUVs are increasingly reliable and widely available for purchase in Canada, a sales mandate is the most effective mechanism governments can put into place to encourage automakers to increase EV supply.

He said, “Without one, electric vehicles built in Ontario and other provinces end up going to out-of-province markets where a sales mandate is in place. The Pembina Institute applauds California’s decision last week to require that 100% of new light-duty vehicle (LDVs) sales be zero-emission by 2035.

“With the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act and the U.S.’s largest state requiring more and more cars to be zero-emission, the shift of car manufacturers to a 100% supply of ZEVs across North America is not a matter of if, but when. Indeed, Washington and Massachusetts are following suit by adopting California’s regulations.”

Canadian car makers recently breathed a sigh of relief when US lawmakers scrapped part of a large incentive package for EVs that originally excluded cars assembled in Canada from a proposed $7,500 US consumer tax credit for ‘clean vehicles’.

The credit, which includes battery-electric, plug-in hybrids and hydrogen fuel cell, is part of a $369bn proposed new spending on climate-related initiatives included in the Inflation Reduction Act.

In addition to a sales mandate, the institute recommends that support be offered to manufacturers to help them switch facilities to be EV-ready and to secure the supply chains to generate the materials required. Utilities must be involved too, to ensure the necessary clean electricity is available to support millions of electric vehicles.

“The Pembina Institute urges the federal government to make good on the promises of the Emissions Reductions Plan and institute the promised sales mandate for light-duty vehicles,” added Thorn.

The clean fuel standard will enable Canada to cut more than 20m tonnes of carbon pollution annually, delivering about 10% of the progress needed to achieve its 2030 emissions target, which aims for a 40% reduction on 2005 levels.

British Columbia and Quebec are the only provinces in Canada that have zero-emission light-duty vehicle sales mandates, both mandating that all new light-duty vehicle sales are fully zero-emission by 2035.

Read more: All new California cars to be electric by 2035