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$47 billion in charging infrastructure needed by 2040 as Canada pushes for greener trucks – Truck News

The number of zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles (MHDVs) is projected to reach 414,000 by 2030 and 2.4 million by 2040 to meet the federal target of 100% zero-emission MHDVs by 2040, according to the study on the country’s EV charging infrastructure, recently released by Natural Resources Canada. While the adoption of zero-emission MHDVs in Canada is currently in its early stages, it is expected to grow rapidly over the next decade. 

Public MHDV charging demand is expected to grow from nearly zero today to 41,000 ports by 2030, 120,000 by 2035, and 275,000 by 2040, the study reads, adding that battery EVs are expected to dominate the zero-emission MHDV market, with numbers reaching 414,000 in 2030 and 2.4 million by 2040.

Private and fleet depot charging

As the adoption of EVs will grow, private and fleet depot charging will be crucial, especially in the early stages of market development.

This would include overnight charging in fleet depots and opportunity charging at destination locations such as warehouses. It is expected that private and fleet depot charging will require an additional 217,000 ports in 2030 and 1.1 million in 2040.

The chart shows Public and private charging needs for zero emission MHDVs
(Graphic: Natural Resources Canada)

This infrastructure growth will result in 8.6 EVs per public port in 2040.

Costs include equipment, installation, electrical upgrades

Deploying EV charging infrastructure will involve capital costs, including equipment, installation and local electrical upgrades. 

By 2040, capital investments of $47 billion are needed to support public charging needs in the MHDV sector, the report says.

Compared to the light duty vehicle (LDV) sector, where the annual costs remain relatively constant (about one billion annually), MHDV capital costs are expected to grow from $340 million in 2025, to more than $1.7 billion by 2030, and $6.4 billion by 2040. 

While the report does not specify where these funds will come from, the expectation is that governments at all levels will continue to play a major role in funding, along with public funds that will increasingly need to leverage additional private investments.

Charging and grid upgrades: $17,000 per vehicle

To meet the expected demand, it’s estimated that charging for both LDVs and MHDVs could add up to 4,300 MW of demand by 2030, growing to 22,500 MW by 2040.

The cost of upgrading the grid to handle this demand, including generation, transmission, and distribution, is estimated to be between $26 billion and $294 billion from 2025 to 2040. This translates to around $3,000 per LDV and $17,000 per MHDV.

“Our estimate of grid upgrades required to meet EV demand—including generation, transmission and distribution—ranges from $26 billion to 294 billion (mid-range: $94 billion) over the 2025 to 2040 period, reflecting the significant uncertainty around the magnitude of costs, as well as regional variations,” the report says.

the chart shows the Daily energy requirements for zero emission MHDVs
(Graphic: Natural Resources Canada)

Currently, most charging infrastructure is focused in urban areas and the largest provinces. Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, and Alberta are expected to dominate future charging needs for both LDVs and MHDVs, accounting for 92% of MHDV ports by 2040. Major urban areas like Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver have significant public charging needs for MHDVs, with Toronto requiring extensive infrastructure by 2040.

By 2030, the country would need to install 41,000 public charging ports for MHDVs in addition to 235,000 Level 2 and direct current fast charging (DCFC) public charging ports for LDVs.

By 2040, the number of public ports is projected to grow to 275,00 and 679,000 ports, respectively.

Public policy interventions

The report also details several alternative scenarios, exploring what different EV charging futures could look like, as overall need for public charging and associate investments could be reduced through public policy interventions.

Under a scenario where Canadians drive 25% fewer kilometres, the number of public LDV ports required is 58,000 lower in 2030 and 168,000 lower in 2040, the study predicts. This can be achieved by encouraging drivers to avoid travel where possible, working remotely, and shift to other low-emitting models like public transit, active transportation, etc. 

In scenarios where effective charging power and utilization rates are higher, the number of public ports could fall by another 25,000. A 25% decrease in driving distance would require significant investments in alternative modes of transport—including public transit, cycling and walking—as well as changes to urban planning and design to encourage less car-oriented communities.


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