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Bold Delta plan coming on energy, emissions

EV’s and associated infrastructure seen a playing an important role
The city is refreshing its Community Energy and Emissions Plan. Through a couple of rounds of public engagement last year, the city asked residents what should Delta focus on as priorities.

A new Community Energy and Emissions Plan is on the horizon for the City of Delta.

Staff last year wrapped up another round of public consultation through a survey and are to come back to council with a draft report in early 2023 on a new plan.

The plan, among other things, will help identify priorities for the most appropriate and effective climate action decisions for the city and community.

The last round of engagement asked residents’ input on such “big moves” as reducing emissions, considering electrifying transportation, active transportation and transit, new buildings that are energy efficient and low carbon, as well as retrofitting existing buildings.

An earlier round of public engagement last year found that participants feel a personal sense of responsibility to help reduce emissions that contribute to climate change and are looking to the city to lead by example.

They would like to see, among other things, more fast charging infrastructure and electric vehicles (EV) become more affordable.

A staff report on the engagement results notes, “There is a belief that EV adoption is hampered by high cost of vehicles, limited charging options and long wait times at those fast chargers that do exist. It was noted that the City’s EV strategy, when implemented, will make charging easier especially for residents in multi-unit buildings.”

Meanwhile, the city last week announced it has received funding to add more EV charging stations.

Delta received a $200,000 investment through Natural Resources Canada’s Zero-Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program, which includes $150,000 to support the installation of one EV fast charger and 20 Level 2 EV charging stations at public facilities, as well as $50,000 for 10 Level 2 EV chargers at three of Delta’s fleet facilities.

In addition, the province is also contributing $25,000 for the fast charger under the CleanBC Go Electric Public Charger Program.

The new public stations are expected to be operational in late 2023.

The city currently owns and operates about 30 Level 2 charging stations at civic facilities, but no Level 3 fast charge stations.

In 2019, BC Hydro installed a DC Fast Charge station at the South Delta Recreation Centre to fill a gap in their provincial network of fast charging stations.

On another front, council last year approved new electric vehicle and electric bicycle parking and charging requirements for new developments.