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BC Hydro Fast EV Charging - Fees starting May 1st, 2021

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Hey folks,

I just got an email from BCHydro and it seems like they're planning to charge for their Level 3 DC chargers in BC. Ranges from $0.12/minute to $0.27/minute depending on how fast their chargers are. I was really hoping they would be able to charge per kWh by now :(

Here's an excerpt from the email I received:

On March 23, the BC Utilities Commission (BCUC) provided interim approval of charging rates for our fast charging stations.

Starting May 1, 2021, the following interim rates will apply:

  • $0.12 per minute for 25kW DC fast chargers (currently in Hope, Squamish and Horseshoe Bay)
  • $0.21 per minute for 50kW DC fast chargers (all remaining locations)
  • $0.27 per minute for 100kW DC fast chargers (for future use – not yet deployed)
I have mixed feelings about the calculation method. On one hand, I would like the idea of being able to pay for what I am receiving. On the other hand, hopefully it will encourage drivers to "charge efficiently". It can be irritating to be waiting and waiting while a Bolt charges at its excruciatingly slow rate and someone else slowly charges from 90% to 95%.

Regarding the Bolt...
DC Fast charging1 hour 20 minutes

"So we drove a 2020 Bolt EV down to 4% state of charge and plugged it into a 150 kW Electrify America DC fast charge station and recorded the entire charging session in a 10X time-lapse video. The Bolt EV took 69 minutes to reach 80% and accepted 51 kWh. That's just too long to get to 80% in our opinion."

Hopefully those drivers will be encouraged to charge efficiently and make the station available.

I'm glad to see that BC Hydro believes it is able to put a price on charging. It suggests the EV presence is growing to the level that "free charging" is no longer a necessary incentive.
I was really hoping they would be able to charge per kWh by now

It is a federal restriction that they are not allowed to charge per kWh. They are working on changing the rules, but will likely be mid 2022 at the earliest.

@Tz00 I thought the issue was that only utility companies were allowed to bill by the kWh under the current rules? If that's true, and given that BC Hydro is a utility (they are regulated by BCUC), wouldn't they be allowed to charge that way?
No they are not, as per the laws, from the link above:

What are the billing methods for charging electric vehicles?​
In Canada, possible billing methods for charging electric vehicles include flat fee (charge per use, charge per month) and time-based (charge per amount of time) billing. EV charging can also be provided free of charge or included in the amount charged for another service (e.g. as part of the rate for parking the vehicle).​
  • Informative
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