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100% of Auto Sales Must be Zero-Emission by 2035, Says Canada

EV cars charging
The Government of Canada will pursue a combination of investments and regulations to help Canadians and industry transition to achieve 100% zero-emission vehicle sales by 2035. PHOTO Shutterstock

The Government of Canada is setting a mandatory target for all new light-duty cars and passenger trucks sales to be zero-emission by 2035, accelerating Canada’s previous goal of 100 percent sales by 2040.

The announcement came from:

  • the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra,
  • the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, and
  • the Minister of Canadian Heritage, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault.

The Government of Canada is taking action to cut pollution from all sectors of the economy – including from the transportation sector, which accounts for one-quarter of Canadian greenhouse gas emissions.

Zero-emission goal by 2035

To ensure Canada gets to this goal, and to provide certainty about the pathway to get there, the Government of Canada will pursue a combination of investments and regulations to help Canadians and industry transition to achieve 100 percent zero-emission vehicle sales by 2035.

It will work also with partners to develop interim 2025 and 2030 targets, and additional mandatory measures that may be needed beyond Canada’s light-duty vehicle greenhouse gas emissions regulations.

The announcement is coupled with existing measures to support increased zero-emission vehicle adoption – from incentives that help with the upfront costs of zero-emission vehicles, to investments in zero-emission charging infrastructure, to partnerships with auto manufacturers which are helping them re-tool and produce zero-emission vehicles right here in Canada.

Taken together, the government is setting the country on a clear path towards Canada’s new 100 percent zero-emission vehicle sales goal and a prosperous net-zero emissions economy by 2050.

The Government of Canada also remains committed to aligning with the most ambitious light-duty vehicle greenhouse gas emission regulations in the United States.

Supporting a strong and unified North American automotive sector to transition towards zero-emission vehicles contributes to Canada’s climate change goals, and positions Canadian and American workers alike to benefit economically from this global shift.

Statements from Ministers
Omar Alghabra, Minister of Transport

“Only bold climate policies lead to bold results. Through measures aimed at accelerating the transition to 100 percent zero-emission vehicles sales, we will continue building a cleaner and more resilient economy, while also creating good jobs and opportunities for all Canadians.

“We will also continue to support the automotive sector, including through our investment of $8 billion to accelerate the industrial transition thanks to the Net Zero Accelerator.”

Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change 

“Cutting our transportation emissions is one of the most readily achievable and economically beneficial paths Canada can take on the road to net-zero emissions by 2050.

“That’s why we are committed to aligning Canada’s zero-emission vehicles sales targets with those of the most ambitious North American jurisdictions. We will work with the United States to harmonize performance-based greenhouse gas regulations and greenhouse gas emission standards.

“We’re investing in consumer rebates, charging stations, business tax breaks and industry transition costs to make the shift to zero-emission vehicles as seamless as possible for drivers, workers and entrepreneurs.”

Facts regarding accelerated sales target
  • Canada’s accelerated zero-emission vehicle sales target will support the new 2030 climate reduction targets, which are 40 percent to 45 percent below 2005 levels.
  • To date, the Government has invested more than $1 billion in measures to support increasing zero-emission vehicle adoption, including:
    • Providing $587 million towards Transport Canada’s Incentives for Zero-Emission Vehicles program, which has helped over 92,000 Canadians and Canadian businesses make the switch to zero-emission vehicles; and
    • Providing more than $460 million to support the build-out of a coast-to-coast network of electric vehicle fast chargers, electric vehicle chargers where Canadians live, work and play, natural gas stations along key freight corridors, and hydrogen stations in metropolitan centres.
    • To date, these investments have supported projects that will result in more than 16,500 new electric vehicle chargers, 10 hydrogen stations, and 20 natural gas stations.
  • The auto industry is investing hundreds of billions of dollars to accelerate its vehicle electrification plans, including recent commitments to re-tool several Canadian factories to build zero-emission vehicles.
  • The Government of Canada has also introduced new measures to support Canada’s automotive sector transition to zero-emission vehicles, including a 50 percent corporate tax cut for businesses manufacturing zero-emission vehicles and components in Canada.

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