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Electric vehicle charging stations

An approved and certified measurement system is integral to accurate and reliable measurement of electricity. The Electricity and Gas Inspection Act (EGIA) and regulations require that we approve and recertify at prescribed intervals measuring devices used to determine a fee for electricity consumption. This helps protect consumers and electric vehicle (EV) charging station operators against loss due to inaccurate measurement and/or unfair practices.

Want to get involved in developing requirements for electric vehicle charging stations?

We are taking steps to protect consumers’ rights to fair and accurate measurement when they are purchasing a charge for their EV based on measurement. As part of this work, we are developing performance-based requirements to help minimize costs and the regulatory burden for EV charging station operators and equipment manufacturers.

We are looking for help from EV owners, charging station operators and equipment manufacturers to develop these requirements. We would like your input on opportunities and challenges relating to billing approaches as well as EV charging station equipment, set-ups, etc.

Want to participate? Please send an email to ic.evce-erve.ic@canada.ca before January 11, 2021 with your name and whether you are an EV owner, charging station owner/operator or equipment manufacturer. We look forward to hearing from you.

What you need to know about electric vehicle charging stations

What is our role with respect to electric vehicle charging stations?

Our mandate is to protect the right of consumers to accurate and reliable measurement when they make a purchase based on measurement. As part of our mandate, we administer the EGIA, which sets out requirements for the performance of measuring devices when charging for the purchase or sale of electricity. It also sets out the requirement for operators to register their measuring devices when selling electricity.

What are we doing to allow kilowatt-hour billing?

In the next 18 months, we expect to allow existing and new electric vehicle (EV) charging stations that meet established technical standards to charge based on kilowatt-hours (kWh) consumed. We will do this by continuing to work closely with industry and monitoring requirements other countries are developing, as well as advances and innovations in EV charging station technologies. The requirements will be performance-based to minimize costs and regulatory burden for EV charging station operators, while ensuring consumers receive accurate and reliable measurement, and protection against unfair practices.

We will also work with EV charging station operators to evaluate EV charging stations at their installation site under typical conditions of use. If these stations meet the technical standards, they will be approved to charge for electricity based on kWh.

What else are we doing to support Canadians?

While we are developing our standards for Canada, we are also continuing our work with our international partners, including the U.S. National Conference on Weights and Measures and the International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML), to develop international model standards for billing by kWh at EV charging stations. Our participation in this work ensures Canadians’ interests are represented during the development of these model standards.

This approach gives Canadian manufacturers international market opportunities, and provides businesses and consumers with greater access to EV charging station options, as compliance in one participating country enables market access to all participating countries.

Why is it important to register electric vehicle charging stations?

To protect the right of consumers to accurate and reliable measurement when being charged based on measurement, devices must be traceable to a person who is accountable for their use and operation.

To allow traceability and accountability, device operators are required to register as contractors under the EGIA. The requirement to register EV charging stations enables us to track devices used for EV charging to ensure they meet minimum standards for measurement accuracy and reliability. This protects consumers from inaccurate measurement or unfair practices.

What is the role of the operator?

The operator is responsible for keeping their EV charging station in good working condition. The operator must also keep records with the date of the charging station’s last measurement accuracy certification and energy consumption information.

This information allows us to monitor EV charging station device compliance and to respond to consumer complaints of suspected inaccurate measurement.

Is there a cost to register as a contractor?

There is no cost for EV charging station operators to register as a contractor. Registration can be completed by mail or email.

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).

What is the most common billing method?

Time-based and flat fee billing methods are most commonly used in Canada and other countries, as they allowed the EV charging infrastructure to grow quickly in support of EV adoption, while providing industry with time to develop and refine technologies necessary for accurate and reliable measurement of kWh consumption at EV charging stations.

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