The Newsletter of Electric Vehicle Society

September 2020

EVs are about to be short-changed and you can help!

The Clean Fuel Standard (CFS) could be one of the most important initiatives to help reduce carbon emissions in Canada. For electric vehicles, the credits generated through this program could be re-invested to support new charging stations, education and outreach programs, or discounts on the purchase price of vehicles. In June 2019, the government recommended, with the support of EV Society and industry stakeholders, that all electricity delivered to EVs would generate credits that could be reinvested. However, in a public stakeholder meeting this July, the government proposed changes that would severely reduce the number of credits generated. Since most EV charging occurs at home and overnight using a surplus of inexpensive electricity this change means that roughly 80% of crediting that could have been generated for reinvestment in Canada's future transportation initiatives will be excluded.

This is where you come in.

EV Society has launched a campaign for members and friends to make their voice heard and contact the Honourable Minister Wilkinson of Environment and Climate Change Canada. This needs to happen urgently, within the next week in fact, to give time to guide changes that are equitable and fair to all present and future Canadian EV owners.

To learn more, please visit our CFS Campaign page and take a few moments to use our automatic online tool to send a letter to the Minister in support of changes to the CFS. Together, we can make our voices heard!

Welcome to the complete September 2020 edition of EV Surge.

This month we are dealing with the compelling issue of electric transportation’s impact on GHG emissions and, by extension, their impact on global warming and Canada’s commitment to the Paris Agreement. If you haven’t done so already, read Presidential Thoughts (above) and express your commitment to a clean and green future by sending a message to Minister of Environment & Climate Change Canada Wilkinson by using the convenient online tool.

Also this month, we are pleased to be adding Pat Troy to our list of contributors. His article on EV adoption in the transit sector is a timely and informative guide to helping transit agencies as they grapple with the challenges of greening their vehicle fleets. We hope to hear much more from Pat in the future!

Read on!



Canada Talks Electric Cars Webinar

Episode #4 -

"The Impact of EVs on Climate Change and your Health in Canada”

When: September 1st, 2020

Time: 7:30 PM

Where: On-line

Electric Vehicle Society is excited to announce episode #4 of the “Canada Talks Electric Cars” webinar! This episode is entitled "The Impact of EVs on Climate Change and your Health in Canada".

This months guest speakers are Dr. Joyce Lee and Dr. Jeremy Theal.

Dr. Joyce Lee is a Care of the Elderly Physician and Dr. Jeremy Theal is a Staff Gastroenterologist and Chief Medical Information Officer. Both practice at North York General Hospital (NYGH). Drs. Lee and Theal are parents of a 6 year old girl. They are concerned about the effects of climate change, and what kind of world their daughter will inherit. In 2018, they trained under Nobel Laureate Al Gore to become Climate Reality Leaders. Since that time, they have given more than 40 presentations about climate change to community groups, healthcare providers, and business leaders in Canada. Their goal is to share the scientific certainty, the immediacy, and the impacts of the climate crisis, while inspiring people to act on this important issue. They have been driving electric vehicles since 2013.

If you are unable to attend the webinar on September 1st, it will be recorded and available for viewing on the Electric Vehicle Society YouTube Channel. Please visit and subscribe.

Canada Talks Electric Cars webinar brings you Canadian leaders and experts from the electric vehicle industry and provides a forum to ask questions about a wide range of EV related subjects. Hear about the latest news and developments in our transition to electric mobility.

Don’t miss out! Register to receive your personal link to the webinar below.

After you register, you will be e-mailed a link to access the webinar.

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No Aversion to Conversion

From diesel to ZEVs: how electric bus conversions could bring new life to transit fleets

MTB Transit Solutions, a large bus repair company, based in Milton, Ont. Through its new service, ZEV Clean Power, the company will replace diesel bus drive trains with fully battery electric systems.

Planned refurbishing

But that’s just part of the solution. The sweet spot is how the service complements existing municipal service schedules and budgets — MTB proposes that agencies do the changeover when their diesel buses come up for planned engine refurbishing, typically after eight or nine years of service.

At that point, instead of a standard refurbishment, which adds four years to a diesel’s lifespan, MTB will replace the diesel engine with a battery-powered system — effectively extending the life of the vehicle from 12 to 18 years while completely eliminating harmful emissions.

Lower overhead, quicker return

Aside from putting off the significant cost and effort of replacing a bus while reducing the rate at which out-of-service buses must be disposed of, the “repowering” process comes with a number of additional benefits, one of which is speed.

The repower is going to take less than six months to complete. Right now, to buy a new battery-electric bus, the wait time is minimum a year to upwards of two years. The demand is much higher than the supply says Gara Hay, president of MTB.

In terms of price, the $500,000 cost of repowering is also only about half that of a new electric bus. And according to MTB, transit agencies will save $40,000 to $50,000 per year in maintenance and fuel costs by going electric, which means the repowering would likely pay for itself by the end of the bus’ life.

Canadian supply chain

Canadian transit authorities considering the repowering process are also likely to find attractive the fact that MTB’s entire product, from propulsion chain to battery, is Canadian-made. MTB, which has been in the bus repair and refurbishment business for 35 years, purchases its batteries from a Mississauga company, and the motors and engineering work are sourced from Quebec.

Complete article by Electric Autonomy

Meter Matters:

Send Measurement Canada a Message

Drive an #EV in Canada? Tesla has started a campaign to urge Measurement Canada to allow per-kWh billing on charging stations across the country to make it fairer to consumers.

This is also an initiative that EV Society has been working on.

Please encourage people to sign on to this campaign. It is so important that this change happens.

Electricity and Water DO Mix

Pure Watercraft launches electric boat kits to electrify the most popular watercraft.

Seattle-based Pure Watercraft just announced three new electric boat packages that turn a standard boat hull into an electric boat and have you leaving a wake without any exhaust fumes.

Pure Watercraft is now rolling out their newest packages that are designed to interface their Pure OUTBOARD motors the most popular hulls from industry partners TRACKER, Sun Tracker, and Still Water.

The Pure Watercraft system is fully integrated with a 25 kW electric motor and high energy-density Li-ion battery pack. According to Pure Watercraft, the motor uses a “high-efficiency propeller running at about half the RPM of a typical gas outboard, which allows their system to provide about 30% more propulsion than a conventional outboard of the same power level.” That means that the 25 kW motor is more equivalent to a typical 50 hp gas outboard.

The three boat packages include a bass fishing boat, a pontoon boat, and a rowing coaching launch.

Prices range from $24,000 to $31,185 with ranges from 22 KM to 32 KM at top speed depending on the boat package chosen.

It is great to see that options for electric conversions are becoming available for those who can afford it.

Complete article by Electrek

Is it time for you to retire?

In electric cars, it's not just the powertrain that is different. It's the tires. Electric cars require special tires for a variety of reasons.

Their tires must handle more weight compared to internal-combustion vehicles, and deliver more torque to the road when moving away from a stop.

Because of their near-silent powertrains, tire noise is also more noticeable in electric cars than internal-combustion vehicles, where it is partially masked by engine noise.

They need increased load-bearing capacity to account for the extra weight of a battery pack. The tread pattern and tread compound are also EV-specific, to handle the nearly-instant torque of electric motors. And to quiet tire noise, a foam inlay is added inside. Continental's tires for electric cars also generally have a "tall and narrow" shape to reduce rolling resistance, which helps increase range.

Tires themselves can have a huge effect on EV range—and so can wheels. Multiple tests have shown that swapping out stock low rolling-resistance tires and aerodynamic wheels for aftermarket items can decrease range, although it can also improve handling.

The Volkswagen ID.3 hatchback will have model-specific tires made by Bridgestone. They not only have lower rolling resistance than conventional tires, but are 20% lighter, and were designed with the ID.3's more even weight distribution in mind, according to Bridgestone.

General Motors said last year that it could offer Michelin airless tires on an upcoming EV in 2024.

Complete article by Green Car reports

Nissan Transitions to CCS for US & Europe,

Dealing CHAdeMO a Fatal Blow

What many have called inevitable has finally happened

When the 2021 Nissan Ariya launches in the US and Europe next year, it will come equipped with aCCS (Combo)inlet, as the brand moves away from CHAdeMO in those markets. The Nissan LEAF and the Mitsubishi Outlander plug in hybrid are currently the only two EVs available in the US that use CHAdeMO, and the LEAF doesn't appear in Nissan's future plans.

When Nissan brought the LEAF to market back in late 2010, it was the first mass-produces electric vehicle, and the SAE hadn't established the Combined Charging System standard yet. In fact, it wasn't until June of 2013 when the first public CCS charging station was opened in Wolfsburg, Germany.

CHAdeMO was developed by the CHAdeMO Association, which initially consisted of the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), Nissan, Mitsubishi, and Fuji Heavy Industries. Toyota later joined as the fifth member.

For a while, it appeared as EVs from the Asian auto manufacturers would use the CHAdeMO standard, US and European OEMs would use CCS and Tesla would use their own proprietary connector. However, even Tesla has modified its connector use recently and new Tesla Model 3s now use the Combo plug in Europe.

The 2021 Nissan Ariya will use the CCS charging standard in the US and Europe. Also of note, the chargeport is located on the front left quarter panel, not in the front like the LEAF.

Also, over the past few years as Japanese and South Korean automakers introduced their new electric offerings, one by one they came equipped with CCS inlets. Kia's first electric offering the Soul EV used the CHAdeMO standard. However, in 2019 when the 2nd generation Soul EV was introduced, it switched to CCS. Kia also uses CCS for the Niro EV. Honda's only all-electric offering, the Clarity also uses CCS, as does the Hyundai Kona Electric.

Therefore, Nissan and Mitsubishi were basically alone on CHAdeMO island, and the writing was on the wall.

All this left the Nissan LEAF as the only BEV sold in the US that uses the CHAdeMO standard, and leaving many to wonder if Nissan would continue to sell CHAdeMO-equipped vehicles beyond Japan. That question has now been answered.

Complete article by Insideev’s

It is good to see that Ontario is slowly and cautiously reopening for business and while we are all looking forward to the day we can return to somewhat normal activities we shouldn’t loose sight that progress is still being made towards electrifying transportation and the Electric Vehicle Society is helping to make that happen. Recently I got an email from Andrew Port, Sr. Project Manager with BGIS Direct asking for some assistance. They were installing 3 new IVY DC fast chargers at the Sobeys parking lot at 155 Edward Street in Gravenhurst and as part of their final energization and commissioning they wanted to provide a charge to an EV and we provided one for the test. On Monday July 27th Marty Lancaster, a member of the Barrie-Orillia Chapter, and I took his 2019 Kia Soul to Gravenhurst, met up with the Master Electrician on site and Marty received the very first charge from the charging stations at this location. All three chargers worked flawlessly and we spent a pleasant afternoon chatting and enjoying the area scenery while they finished their hook up. This location just off highway 11 and at a grocery store is ideal for EV traffic heading for cottage country coming from Toronto. In the 20-30 minutes it takes to charge to 80% an EV Owner can shop locally and get the supplies for the cottage weekend (there is a hardware store, restaurant, dollar store and donut place within a few minutes walk). We hope they generate revenue for the local economy which relies heavily on cottage traffic during the summer months. So while many people and businesses have experienced a hiatus due to Covid, the work to roll out fast chargers has been continuing on and their next stop was scheduled for Sudbury the next day. The EV Society has provided assistance in Sudbury, London and Windsor, and will be assisting in the far north later this summer! A big thank you to Marty for his help on this one.

- David VanAlstyne, Chapter Lead

Members EV Rally Event - August 29th, 2020

Participate in a fun outdoor and physically distant event for EV Society members. This event is dependent on Windsor-Essex moving to stage 3 or will have to be limited to a group of 10. We will drive and visit a couple of wineries and other destinations and enjoy what they have to offer, while maintaining distance.

Rally Itinerary:

  1. Start: 10:45 am -11:00 am, Essex Centre Sports Complex, by the DCFC. 60 Fairview Ave W, Essex. Please arrive earlier if you need to charge.

  2. 11:15-12:00pm. Muscedere Vineyards. 7457 County Rd 18, Harrow.

-You may enjoy the patio for wood oven pizza, wine or soft drink, or Gelato. Reservations are recommended, call 519-738-1145 and limited to a group of six. Retail store is open to purchase wine at the front door.

  1. 12:15- 1:00. CREW-Colchester Ridge Estate Winery. 108 Essex Rd. 50. Outdoor patio for hors d’oevres and wine. Retail wine store pick up. Call 519-738-9800 for RSVP.

  2. 1:05-1:30. Colchester Harbour. 100 Jackson St. Harrow. -Enjoy the water views. Public parking off Sullivan St.

  3. 2:00 Amherstburg, Park House Museum. 214 Dalhousie St. Amherstburg. Park on Dalhousie St. as close as possible where available. We can meet up and proceed from there. Go for a walk, ice cream, coffee and lots of dining options. You may choose to do your own thing or participate among EVS friends.

Notes: Please call directly to make reservations for a table. If you like to spend more time in one location just get an earlier start, especially if ordering food. We will aim for a timely departure times. You may join in part or in its entirety. Masks will be required to enter facilities. Any Questions call 519-982-9278 or email

- Pino Mastroianni, Chapter Lead

Electric Transit:

A Compelling Choice

by Pat Troy

Founder – Troy EV Consulting

Who am I?

To many of you, I’m a new voice in the Canadian world of vehicle electrification, but I have made a career of leading the design, engineering and construction of dozens of commercial electric vehicles for major OEMs in Detroit. This includes the transit bus sector, notably a range-extended hybrid bus and two different full-electric buses, each engineered from the ground up. Through this work, I was able to learn about the transit bus industry and its new electric-powered players as well as the expectations of transit agencies and operators. Troy EV Consulting was founded earlier this year in Windsor Ontario to provide fleet feasibility and engineering support to companies, fleets and individuals who are looking for purpose-built EV solutions and successful EV rollouts from cars to trucks to buses.

Through this article, we’ll walk through the many reasons why electrification is advantageous to transit agencies right now, all while being honest about the drawbacks that still exist in this industry. Ultimately, we cannot weigh the value of each advantage and drawback without more knowledge about an agency’s operation, but this should serve as a good starting point for every agency, all of whom must be considering the eventual electric future and the benefits to the people they serve.

Why Electric Busses?

To the readers of EV Surge, it should come as no surprise that the electrification of our vehicles is happening. While readers and EV Society members have done their own calculus to make the switch from gasoline and diesel vehicles into ones powered by electricity, each driver understands that they are (though decreasingly so) early adopters of this technology. Many of you have certainly had moments where you provided education to your friends and families (and even dealerships) about the advantages you have found in driving your electric vehicle.

While we, as personal users, tend to purchase vehicles on a relatively short time scale and with modest expectations for mileage accumulation and duty cycle, the fleet purchasing system operates very differently and poses some new challenges for “justifying” the move to electric vehicles. In the case of transit agencies, these concerns loom largest as they expect the most from their vehicles. This is evident in the fact that a diesel-powered transit bus now easily crests $500k per unit. Once one adds a large capacity battery and electric drive, $1-$1.2 million is not impossible for an equivalent bus. So how do we convince transit agencies that the decision to go electric is a prudent one for their bottom line as well as the health of the community? With the expected life cycle of a new bus in Canadian operation to be 12-18 years, it’s also critical that we make the switch as soon as possible, since diesel buses purchased in the last 2 or 3 years still may have 15 years on the road before their next replacement.

For many years, commercial EVs have been marketed on the basis of reduced TCO (Total Cost of Ownership). The general claim is that reduced maintenance and fuel costs will, after some initial payback period, put the operator in the black, despite the increase upfront cost. Five years ago, there was almost no entity with the history to make this claim using actual data. Instead the costs of mitigated service procedures were used. Oil changes, diesel after-treatment service, transmission and engine services are reduced to nearly zero in the EV world, so this was compelling. For the operators though, this mitigated cost was often dwarfed by their perception of the risk of battery degradation. When a battery electric bus can have $300k in batteries on its roof, its easy to see why this was not quite a home-run with would-be electric operators. Today, there are agencies who have been operating the buses and batteries for sufficient time to provide compelling initial data. This data generally indicates that the claims of the marketing people were largely correct. Well-engineered battery systems are holding up well in commercial usage provided the thermal management and chemistry are engineered correctly.

Other aspects of the TCO (Total Cost of Operation) equation include reduction in fuel costs. With electricity almost always less expensive and more stable than highly volatile global fuel markets, planning and budgeting can be improved substantially, leading to better pricing reliability for riders. Add to this, the fact that the infrastructure to “create” the fuel is secure and domestic and the case looks even better for improving our society on a large scale. Rather than relying on off-shore oil rigs, boats and non-domestic refineries, we will rely more on the clean power generation sector which employs our friends and neighbours right here in Canada. As Canada grows its clean energy sector, the benefit grows likewise.

I would be remiss to neglect another important rationale for electric busing: reduced local emissions. This is where there is a clear line in the sand even between diesel hybrids and electrics. The various constraints of diesel engine combustion and modern diesel after-treatment performance make using a diesel hybrid without generating similar levels of particulate matter or soot very challenging. Indeed, intermittent engine usage is a worst-case scenario for the DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter) and may lead to increased vehicle downtime for more frequent servicing and remanufacturing. While the common pushback is usually that BEVs merely “move” emissions from point-of-use to generating stations out of the cities, the grid generation mix is important. In provinces like Ontario and Quebec, where the overwhelming majority of electrical generation is done via clean means, the case for heavy vehicle electrification is all the more clear. In these scenarios, emissions are not just “moved” but almost fully mitigated, improving the air cleanliness in the cities where the vehicles operate without increasing the emissions burden of rural areas.

At this point, we’ve covered the so-called “obvious” reasons for immediate electrification. The next few points are a little further afield than reduced fuel costs and emissions. These items are ones that I have come across in my time developing customer-driven electric vehicle solutions for the commercial sector and there’s perhaps no other industry where the customer dictates as much about the vehicles than the transit sector. Major transit agency RFQ (Request For Quote) documents often prescribe elements of the bus in great detail, such that the operator need not increase their part supply or train mechanics on new hardware. Indeed, a new bus may be sought with an axle that matches the existing fleet, purchased ten years earlier. Thisleads to almost every bus acquisition being a bespoke batch-build for the customer. Needless to say, the transit agency customer is a picky one, which poses new challenges and opportunities for the growing battery electric bus industry.

Happier Drivers

The first point is an interesting one that I’ve seen play out in transit and last-mile delivery applications. A primary concern for these industries, especially in the previous age of generally low North American unemployment is driver retention. This is a major concern,as the cost of finding, hiring and retaining new drivers can be a significant burden for these industries and it is one that does not provide any value add to customers. So how does an electric bus fleet help retain drivers? Both improved performance and the improvement of the working environment provided by the lack of diesel emissions are the most often cited improvements. For a transit bus driver (or a courier in a walk-in van) the lack of noise and vibration, engine and transmission issues, diesel odour and emissions constitutes a paradigm shift in their working conditions. Suddenly, buses are no longer smelly, noisy and vibration-ridden working places, but calm, consistent and dare I say, pleasant places to be. This effect was made very clear to me by one courier driver I worked with in the past. He instantly took a great deal of pride in his electric truck and loved to show it off to other drivers. He loved that it was quicker,with no transmission delays and that he didn’t have to sit atop a noisy, hot engine day after day. It may not be at the forefront of discussions, but drivers and their unions have a huge stake in electrification, as it manifests improved working conditions day in and day out. For operators, this may be difficult to quantify, but the writing is on the wall in my experience.

Happier Riders

As with the drivers, riders also benefit significantly from the improved internal conditions of the buses. Increasing ridership is a primary concern for all agencies and a significant lever for improving the bottom line. With an electric bus, the diesel motor noise, vibration and emissions are removed from the perception of the riders. After a long day at school or work, this provides a far more pleasant experience for the ridership and will inevitably lead to more people opting to take the bus rather than drive private cars. Ultimately, when we look at reasons people do or do not take the bus, we need to look at the deterrents. As electric vehicles become more commonplace on our streets, the complaints of noise, emissions and even heat from the engine bay will loom larger. Getting riders onto electric buses now will help that effect grow even more quickly.


Even safety can be increased with the electric transition. Due to the increased control that drivers have over the wheel torque and the reduction of torque delay through the automatic gearbox, drivers can maneuver the vehicles with increased dexterity, leading to fewer bumps and collisions (damage and accidents have significant financial costs). Advancements like one-pedal-driving may further improve the control that drivers have over the vehicles. The massive electric torque can help in scenarios where the vehicle may become stuck and, in the future,as component costs are reduced, even AWD and electronic stability programming may be feasible. This advancement would be immediately attractive to operators like those in Canada, who regularly deal with deep snow and slippery conditions.

After considering all of that, why would we not be buying 100% electric buses in every transit agency in Canada?


While the industry has come an incredibly long way in the last 10 years, there are still hills to climb and barriers to adoption. The number one issue has to be infrastructure. Depending on the duty cycle of the buses (24 hours vs. shift operation) there can be significant differences in the cost of charging infrastructure. Depending on the size of the transit agency, overnight charging may be sufficient for the fleet and can be installed and maintained with minimal cost. For buses with high duty cycles (16 hours per day or more), the use case begins to favour fast charging while en-route. The feasibility work which must be done relies on the present usage as well as future usage and expansion to determine how best to select the correct combination of battery chemistry, size and charging infrastructure. With the aid of a consulting service, these challenges can be surmounted.

Climate Control

From a technical perspective, with a Canadian viewpoint, heating and cooling are likely the biggest concerns for electric bus engineering. We’ve made big strides in the propulsion and energy storage parts of the equation, but climate control, heating specifically, adds a big challenge to deployment in Canada. One might assume that cooling is the bigger challenge, but from a technical perspective, an air conditioning system doesn’t need to use energy “directly” to cool air, rather it captures the heat of the interior air and exchanges it with the exterior environment. In this way, the efficiency can exceed 100% and often is capable of being greater than 200%. When one considers a hot day of 35 degrees Celsius and a target cabin temp of 20 degrees, the difference is also small, just 15 degrees. In the case of heating, this is not the case, as energy must be consumed at efficiencies closer to 90% to heat the cabin, as well as tackling a much higher temperature differential. If the temperature is -20 degrees Celsius outside, the riders will still want 20 degrees inside, a gap of 40 degrees Celsius. This is a simple way of looking at it, but it should put the challenge in perspective. For cold areas of the country, it may be unavoidable to add fuel fired heaters to these vehicles to reduce the size of the battery (a significant factor in acquisition cost) that would be needed to protect against these cold situations. From my perspective, as an engineer providing these solutions to the industry, it’s worthwhile to consider just how much of a difference we can make in the jump from diesel emissions at all times the bus operates to the occasional operation of a well-controlled fuel-fired heater. This is still an incredible advancement, even if it does fall short of the truly 100% electric target.


The last big hurdle is, of course, initial cost. There is no escaping the fact that a battery electric bus costs much more than the diesel equivalent. As the TCO equation and electric cost savings manifest for more users, I expect the transition to happen more rapidly. The other challenge is often in the procurement mechanisms and government support for our transit agencies. If there is funding for buses, but not charging infrastructure, then perhaps a deal will fail to be made. We need to continue to lobby our governments to provide support for the vehicles, infrastructure and the engineering work needed upfront to ensure that adoption and rollout are successful for the operators. As we see the true value of the things I’ve mentioned in this article become quantifiable for the early-adopters, we will be better armed to make the case to more transit agencies and fleet operators.

The Facts

As of this righting, the facts are these: The marketplace is ready to provide the vehicles, infrastructure and analysis needed for successful electric vehicle rollout in transit applications. Furthermore, much of this support and downstream economic benefit is right here in Canada. Indeed, the feasibility work for a small transit agency is relatively straightforward and cost effective. With the incredibly long acquisition and operation cycle specific to transit vehicles, it is critical that we encourage and support all agencies buying equipment today. As supporters of the electric future, we must lobby the agencies and the government to support this change now,as a diesel bus bought tomorrow is expected to still be roaming the streets and neighbourhoods 15 years from today.

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