Electric vehicle charging stations
Summary of the current situation
Electric vehicle charging stations allow consumers to charge their electric car by buying electricity. The practice of charging a fee for the use of these stations is relatively new. Various levels of government and private industry organizations have started to install these stations to invest in clean technologies.
Many of these charging stations use measurement systems that incorporate new technologies. These new technologies must comply with different federal measurement laws depending on how the electricity is sold.
When electricity is sold at these stations, the consumer is usually charged a flat rate, a time-based rate or a blended rate (e.g. the consumer is billed for parking and for the vehicle charge together). Blended rates may also be time-based.
If the fees for the use of these stations are based on time, these stations are currently exempt from inspection or any intervention by Measurement Canada. However, if the fees are based on an energy or power measurement, then an approved and inspected meter must be used. Measurement Canada is closely following how this technology is being used, both in Canada and internationally.
Prepaid energy sold on the basis of time
When prepaid energy is sold on the basis of time at charging stations, these stations are exempt from approval and device certification requirements under the Weights and Measures Act. Devices which are exempt under the Act are not required to be:
- approved for use
- initially inspected
- periodically reinspected
Electricity sold on the basis of energy
If a fee is charged for electricity sold at charging stations on the basis of energy (kWh) or time-related demand (kW), then this is considered a transaction subject to the requirements of the Electricity and Gas Inspection Act. This means that the device owner must:
- use defined units of measurement
- make sure the meter type is approved by Measurement Canada
- find an authorized service provider to initially inspect and seal the new meter before using it
- have the meter reinspected periodically by an authorized service provider
- register as a contractor under the Electricity and Gas Inspection Act
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