Away from the transition energy: sales of light trucks are shattering records in Quebec

News 13 December, 2017
  • Photo Le Journal de Montréal, Martin Knight

    QMI agency

    Wednesday, December 13, 2017 17:45

    Wednesday, December 13, 2017 17:45

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    Rather than reduce their energy consumption, the Quebec buy vehicles that are ever more energy efficient and homes even larger.

    The targets set by the government to reduce by 2030 the consumption of oil and emissions of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions will only be achieved if the Quebecers do not change their habits.

    This is the main conclusion of the fourth edition of the State of energy in Quebec, an annual publication of the Chair of management of the energy sector at HEC Montréal.

    “When one speaks of transition (energy), the gasoline sales were up 8 per cent from 2015 to 2016 and it breaks records in sales of trucks,” explained Wednesday, Pierre-Olivier Pineau, coauthor of the report with Johanne Whitmore.

    Quebecers have spent double in 2016 for the purchase of light trucks ($10.9 billion) for the purchase of cars ($5.5 billion), indicates the document.

    Another example: there are fewer than 19 000 electric vehicles or plug-in hybrids on the roads so that the target of the government amounted to 100 000 vehicles of this type in 2020.

    The authors propose the government to put in place measures to reverse the present patterns in transport, including the écofiscalité. The goal is to put an end to the reign of the auto solo.

    “Quebecers may believe we are in the process of initiating the energy transition, but the data show that they are far away from here”, summary Pierre-Olivier Pineau.

    Quebec is located between the Canada and Norway in terms of per capita energy consumption. Hydropower allows Quebecers to have GHG emissions lower than those of their neighbors, but these emissions have stagnated since 2010, according to the report.

    Another example: the number of vehicles per 1000 inhabitants is in growth since 1990 in the province, which contributes to pollution, but also traffic congestion.

    “The government should be encouraging more sustained transition into an economy that minimizes energy losses and improves productivity,” said Mr. Pineau.