Emily Plihal

Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

South Peace News


Municipal District of Smoky River council is happy to announce its three electric vehicle chargers have been commissioned.

Funding for the installation of the chargers was provided by the SouthGrow Regional Initiative (SGRI), in partnership with the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre (MCCAC), and Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), through the Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program (ZEVIP). This portion from SouthGrow Electric Vehicle Charging Program was in the amount of $48,201.56. The MD also received funds from ATCO’s Clean Energy Community Fund in the amount of $15,000.

The three chargers, two level 2 (7 kW) chargers and a level 3 (65 kW) charger cost a total of just over $100, 000 to install.

“The M.D. had an opportunity to provide the community with an EV charging station at a reasonable cost due to federal and provincial grants being available, so we decided to pursue that opportunity,” says Reeve Robert Brochu. “We will consider energy efficiency grants in the future, depending on current circumstances.”

Council has chosen rates of $10 per hour for the Level 2 chargers or $0.80 per minute for the faster charger, these rates could be temporary as the municipality has to analyze the cost to them versus compensation from the consumer to use the chargers. Because there are so few chargers in northern Alberta, specifically Level 3 chargers, council had very few examples of other charging stations to see what rates would be best to use.

The municipality hopes the efforts will help to increase travel to the community from people with electric vehicles, help to reduce its Greenhouse Gas emissions, and also help to promote these two funding programs that have helped them to install this new infrastructure.

The municipality has been working in recent years to reduce their energy consumption and be leaders in the regional movement to adapt and plan for the issues linked to climate change.

ATCO information states it is working to ensure the world is a sustainable place for future generations, creating community investment programs, supporting organizations on energy transition journeys, building capacity for safer communities, and collaborating with sponsored partners to make a meaningful difference.

To learn more about ATCO’s Clean Energy Community Fund please visit https://www.atco.com/en-ca/our-commitment/community-investment/clean-energy-community-fund.html.

The SouthGrow program can be applied for through https://www.southgrow.com/ev-charging-program.