An Okanagan climate action group hosted their fourth annual “Climate Action Energy” in Penticton on Saturday.
First Things First Okanagan is a non-profit group that promotes climate change awareness, with a goal of finding clean energy solutions. The Clean Energy Expo is just another example of how they’re working to achieve this objective.
“Of course, the most important thing is that we don’t put carbon into the air,” explained First Things First chairperson, Jim Beattie.
“So as a result, we have to talk about the kind of energy that is as clean as possible.”
The expo, featuring information booths, from solar energy to electric cars and bikes, and a demonstration on how to make your home more energy efficient. Beattie says the time is now for the general population to start looking at ways we can help the environment.
“If we look around the world now, we see what the problem is,” described Beattie.
“These hurricanes, these floods that they’re having, monsoon floods in Pakistan, our heat dome. It’s unavoidable and undeniable that this is about climate change.”
Several electric bike, car and boat suppliers from Penticton were at the expo to show off their latest electric models. One car salesperson says that the majority of his customers these days are looking to ditch their gas-powered vehicle for an electric, even if it means a long wait.
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“With inventory shortages right now, it makes it a lot harder for them to get,” explained Penticton Kia salesperson, Logan Hannas.
“People are even willing to put thousands of dollars on a deposit list and when we get the vehicle in, we give them a call, but they’re willing to wait up to two years which is insane.”
Hannas said the shift in interest from gas to electric is likely due to the benefits that come with an EV.
“Its better for the environment and that’s one of the main concerns our customers have right now,” said Hannas.
“These new EV’s are also very cost-efficient when you factor in things like not using fuel or oil.”
According to Natural Resources Canada, there are 6,566 electric vehicle charging stations in Canada. One Kelowna businessman is selling EV charging stations that can be installed in your home and says the Grizzl-E charging stations are a lot cheaper than fuelling up a gas-powered.
“Well, this runs on your standard 220-volt outlet, just like a drier outlet for your home, and it costs pennies to charge up on a daily basis, said owner of Beachtek EV
“It’s a 10-kilowatt, level 2 fast charger and its one of the best chargers on the market for the money.”
To learn more about First Things First Okanagan and for tips on sustainable living, click here.