Montreal strikes deal with Volvo to boost electric mobility

2 December 2013

NEW YORK: Volvo and Montréal city government have formed a partnership to boost the uptake of electric vehicles in the Canadian city.

The Société de transport de Montréal (STM), has joined up with a North American subsidiary of Volvo, Nova Bus, to test the use of electric buses and charging stations in Montréal, a city in the Canadian province of Québec, a member of The Climate Group. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed in the presence of Québec Premier Pauline Marois, Michel Labrecque, Chairman, STM and Olof Persson, President and CEO, Volvo Group.

While the initial pilot is small-scale—three Nova LFSe electric buses and two charging stations will be introduced in Montréal—the success of the program will offer insight on scaling-up electric vehicle adoption in public infrastructure in North America and around the world. The initiative is part of Volvo Group’s City Mobility program, which is underway in cities around the globe including Hamburg in Germany and Stockholm in Sweden.

Volvo Group's President and CEO Olof Persson, said in a statement: “We are proud to strengthen our partnership with Montréal and welcome the efforts of the Government of Québec for the electrification of transit in Montréal. We have developed the City Mobility Program to work with governments and city authorities around the world to solve the urban transportation challenges and offer silent, emission-free and safe solutions.

The move is aligned with the Government of Québec’s Transportation Electrification Strategy, which aims to reduce its ecological footprint through increasing electric transport use. Within the strategy, the city of Montréal’s target is to slash greenhouse gas emissions 30% by 2020, compared to 1990’s levels.

Michel Labrecque, Chairman, STM, said: “Our active participation in this type of demonstration project enables us to test new technologies in real operating conditions and to assess their impact on planning, operations, maintenance, and above all, the improvement of customer service. This is also our way of contributing to the greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets of the Government of Québec and the City of Montréal.”

Québec, which is co-chair of our States and Regions Alliance--a network of the world's leading states and regions on climate action--launched its Electrification Policy in October. Under its Transportation Electrification Strategy, the government is undertaking initiatives that represent US$516.1 million in investment, that aims to:

  • Rapidly increase the use of electrical transportation
  • Utilize Québec’s electrical expertise
  • Build a strong and productive industrial network
  • Make the Québec State an example to be followed

Libby Ferguson, States and Regions Director, The Climate Group, commented: “The Electrification Strategy is the latest demonstration of low carbon leadership by the Government of Québec. With a firm focus on job creation, Québec is demonstrating how governments that take the lead to build on existing strengths, promote new low carbon industries and engage with forward thinking companies such as Volvo, can position their regions to reap the future benefits of broader economic, investment and employment growth.”

Read Québec’s Transportation Electrification Strategy

Related news:

Businesses and sub-national governments are making the real progress

COP19: Sub-national governments are the rising stars of climate action

Sub-national governments share their critical issues and ideas on electric vehicle policy

Image by sillygwailo

By Clare Saxon

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