IS THIS PLAIN MADNESS?
“Proposed Electric Vehicle Mandate Will Cost at Least $99 Billion.” Environment Canada.
It is not $99 Billion. The estimated cost with interest is $181 Billion. Our debt is already $1.2 Trillion - Yes, Trillion. Up 65% from just four years ago. The $99 Billion will be borrowed money, adding to our debt. You decide if this is absolute madness.
THE EV mandate to cost us $99 Billion - not a lie, but not the truth. Someone conveniently forgot to add the interest costs, and there appears to be a lot more cost not included and discussed below.
Is this a plan to force us all to a much lower, poverty-stricken standard of living? The Canadian Taxpayer's Federation says our debt is growing at $144 million per day. That means, in one year, our debt will be $2.4 trillion. You decide if this is absolute madness.
PLEASE, SOMEONE, TELL ME I AM WRONG
The federal government spent about $20.2 billion on debt servicing charges in 2021. The new EV car mandate will add $2.8 billion or 10%. And that is the low end. Where is the money coming from? Why are we surprised our taxes are going way up?
Higher direct taxes mean higher indirect taxes, such as increased costs for food, energy, and everything we buy. People are complaining about higher carbon taxes, and even a wee dram of whiskey is getting hit with a new tax. No relief on gas taxes, and we have not even heard about the downstream increases.
I know I am rambling, but things keep popping into my head. Has anyone thought of what will happen to the vehicle manufacturing sector when few can afford to buy those shiny new EVs? People cannot make it financially now. How are we all supposed to afford a new EV? Has anyone in government considered what kind of income a family will require to buy one of those things?
Is this a plan to force us all to a much lower, poverty-stricken standard of living? You decide if this is absolute madness.
We already have 1.5 million people facing food insecurity and energy poverty daily, and the numbers keep growing. The government does not act - what happens when the families are forced to live out on the street? We have not gone through the significant period of mortgage renewals with higher interest rates – that is coming up. You decide what may be the impact and if this is absolute madness.
Minister Guilbeault suggests, “The proposed amendments are expected to lead to a loss of consumer choice..." One of the choices will be, "can you or I afford one of those beasts?"
Environment and Climate Change Canada added that zero-emission cars generally are more expensive than gas- or diesel-powered equivalents, and the overall price increase “could lead to a reduction in the number of vehicles purchased.” They admit it. So, what will be the impact on the vehicle manufacturing sector? How many workers are going to lose their jobs? You decide if this is absolute madness.
“The magnitude of these consumer welfare losses is difficult to estimate," said Guilbeault's Department staff. What about a sensitivity analysis? Has the government thought of putting pen to paper and doing that? You decide if this is absolute madness.
A BREAKDOWN OF THE $99 BILLION
Close to $56 billion of the cost would come from “total increased electricity costs over the time frame,” Is this for upgrading the grid?
The price of home charging would be around $24.5 billion. Something else may be buried here, but the total amount will stay the same.
A total of $16 billion would go toward federal subsidies for vehicle and battery manufacturers, while around $2 billion would be spent on rebates for Canadians who buy EVs between 2023 and 2025.
Other costs, each below $1 billion, would go toward federal subsidies for creating more public EV charging stations.
The $99.4 billion overall price tag does not include possibly related expenses, such as costs of “retraining mechanics” who specialize in repairing non-electric vehicles only and higher insurance prices for EV accidents because they “tend to be heavier due to the weight of batteries on board.”
Guilbeault’s department also did not account for the cost of the installation of home charging systems. But that will take about $3,000 out of your pocket. You decide if this is absolute madness.
“There is an urgent need to address climate change and move towards a low carbon economy. Greenhouse gases are primary contributors to climate change, and the transportation sector accounts for 25 percent of domestic greenhouse gas emissions in Canada” (Minister Guilbeault).
The above is not a lie, but it is not the truth. It does not tell the whole story. That includes rail, marine, aviation and others. Cars contribute 50% of the total. Get all the gas-guzzling vehicles off the road, and the CO2 emissions drop about 80 MT. That gives us a cost of about $75 million per MT of C02 removed.
To remove all the C02 for transportation, 180 MT, would cost us about $151 billion.
On the other side of this are China and India. Whatever we save in Canada in C02 production, China’s and India’s growth more than put it back on the table. We could hit net zero here in Canada, but it will mean nothing if the China and India situation is not solved.
And what are the options? Natural gas burns at about 50% of the emissions of coal. Canada could affect a huge benefit, but sorry, we have primarily shut down Natural Gas exports. The young and restless protest on the basis that shipping natural gas is bad for the environment. I am not a proponent of any sector. I am a proponent of doing the world a world of good, and that may include natural gas exports to China and India. We never get the opportunity to discuss these truths and consequences. You decide if this is absolute madness.
This issue of forcing EVs on us will cost much more than the government says. They are not lying, but they are not telling the truth. Whatever we do here will have no effect if we do not do the world a world of good by considering the impacts of China and India on all of this. Canada can offer solutions to the world, but for yelling and screaming, we do not. You decide if this is absolute madness.
Sustainable Circular Economy
Wayne Drury is CEO of Sustainable Circular Economy, a boutique firm in Vancouver, Canada, that helps businesses and First Nation communities to arrive at environmental solutions that are good for the people and the planet and are sustainable based upon a circular economy lens of reuse, repurpose, and recycle.