Car News

NS Power Revives Fast-Charge Plan

Nova Scotia Power announced earlier this week that they are planning to go forward with an electric fast-charge network. That's after the plan was short-circuited briefly earlier this year. Combine that with a now-open network in New Brunswick, plans from the government of PEI, and Tesla moving in with Superchargers and the Maritimes are quickly charging up.

The plan for the Nova Scotia network was announced last summer. Nova Scotia Power President and CEO Karen Hitt said that "Electric vehicles are the future, and we want to help make Nova Scotia ready for that future." But any big expenditures by NS Power that use ratepayer dollars need to be approved by the province's Utility and Review Board. They pulled the plug on the plan.

The plan has been revived because the company is changing the way it will be funded. The $420,000 the utility was planning to spend will now be coming from Emera, the parent company of Nova Scotia Power. Another $420,000 will come from Natural Resources Canada, and the province will contribute $120,000 to ensure Level 2 chargers are added.

The plan will put Level 2 and Level 3 (quick) charging stations approximately every 65 km along Nova Scotia's main highways. The 12-station network will span from Yarmouth to Sydney. The exact locations have not yet been announced. NS Power will charge $15 per hour for the Level 3 chargers, which is the same amount charged in New Brunswick.

Tesla is also adding Supercharger stations to the Maritimes. Five in New Brunswick and Two in Nova Scotia are set to cover those provinces. The stations will be capable of charging a Tesla to about 80 percent capacity in 30 minutes, and are listed on Tesla's Supercharger map as coming by the end of 2018.

PEI's provincial charging solution was announced earlier this year as well. A network of six stations is expected to be set up around the island by early 2019. The government there is looking for Natural Resources Canada to pick up around half of the bill.

Meanwhile, New Brunswick's provincial network of 19 fast-charging stations is up and running, providing Level 2 and Level 3 charging on that province's major routes.

So if you're looking at an electric road trip to the Maritimes, the provinces are getting ready to leave the welcome plug out for you. Take that charging time and have some lobster, potatoes, or fiddleheads.