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Quebec will be first Canada province with an official ZEV mandate

The province aims to have 100,000 plug-ins on its roads by 2020.

Canada's long been jokingly referred to as the 51st US state. Now, Quebec has officially become the 11th "state" when it comes to a mandates designed to spur more purchases of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids. In fact, the province that includes French as one of its official languages has an ideology that's downright Californian when it comes to getting more plug-in vehicles on the road.

Canada's National Assembly late last month adopted Bill 104, which, among other things, offers financial rewards to people who either buy plug-in vehicles or install charging stations at a home or workplace. Specifically, Québécois who buy plug-in vehicles will receive a rebate worth as much as $8,000, while the government will provide charging-station installation grants. Additionally, Quebec will set aside some highway lanes especially for plug-in vehicle drivers. Take a look at the announcement from Canada's Minister of Sustainable Development here.

Transportation accounts for 43 percent of Quebec's greenhouse-gas emissions, so the broader goal is to create enough incentives for Quebec to have as many as 100,000 vehicles on its roads by the end of the decade.

With the bill, Quebec essentially joins 10 states – led by California and joined by a handful of states in the US Northeast – that have adopted the Golden State's zero-emission-vehicle mandate and account for about a third of US registered-vehicle owners. Quebec had already been showing progressive signs towards plug-in vehicle adoption, as the province's government earlier this year said it would consider a bill that would require each new home as well as existing rental units to include a 240-volt charging station for electric vehicles. Quebec would offset most of the approximately $1,500 cost for installing such a station with a $1,000 subsidy.

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