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Future of Transportation

Why Cara Clairman Believes In Embracing Electric Vehicles for a Greener Future

Cara Clairman

President and CEO, Plug’n Drive

Mediaplanet sat down with Cara Clairman, President and CEO of Plug’n Drive, who shares her insights on EV adoption in Canada, from environmental benefits to exciting partnerships for a sustainable future.

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What are some key things that Canadians should know about EVs and the benefits they bring in terms of the environment?

I think everyone knows that electric vehicles are better for the environment. The greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions are significant, especially in the provinces based on non-GHG emitting sources of electricity like hydro, wind, solar, and nuclear. What I think a lot of people don’t know is how much money they will save driving an electric vehicle (EV). The fuel of electricity is anywhere from one quarter to one seventh the price of gas across the country, so drivers can save thousands of dollars a year in fuel cost alone. EVs also have a fraction of the number of moving parts, meaning maintenance is much cheaper too. Plug’n Drive’s cost calculator called Find Your EV Match can help Canadians better understand what their personal total cost of ownership would be, while comparing their current gas car to any EV on the market based on their personal driving habits.

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How do you envision EV adoption positively impacting Canada?

I’ve already mentioned GHG emission reductions that will help us achieve our climate goals, but switching to EVs will also improve air quality, especially in our urban centers. The EV revolution also has economic benefits for Canadians with our manufacturing capabilities and the mining of critical minerals. Due to all the investments that both the federal and provincial governments have made, there will be great job opportunities now and in the future in the EV industry right here in Canada. 

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What are the main challenges or barriers to widespread EV adoption in Canada, and how is Plug’n Drive addressing these challenges?

The main challenge right now is to help people get over some of their concerns around cost and range. Plug’n Drive helps with test drives and providing the information people need to make the switch. After that, the supply of vehicles is a challenge as there are waiting lists for many different models. This problem should be relatively short-lived, but it’s challenging to find an EV right now. Used EVs are available as a more affordable and immediate alternative.

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What are some collaborative efforts or partnerships that Plug’n Drive has established to promote EV adoption?

Plug’n Drive is working with a variety of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) offering test drives across Canada. We have an exciting partnership with Uber where we’re offering educational webinars and in-person test drives catering specifically to the needs and concerns of ride-hailing drivers. We’ve also partnered with Electric Mobility Canada to offer training to dealerships, and with Women in Renewable Energy to offer specialized programming to get more women interested EVs and the EV industry. 

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