• 05 May, 2018
  • Current Research, Electric Mobility

Project Description

Objective

To capture direct, indirect and induced dollar impacts on the national and provincial economies of varying EV adoption scenarios.

Description

A large shift to EV mobility, particularly a rapid one, would have significant repercussions for the Canadian economy. There are three main positive aspects to the EV economic impacts. First, there are the new capital impacts that arise from new investment in machinery, warehousing, and infrastructure to support the EV system. Second, there will be new operational expenditure impacts that arise from operating and maintaining the new vehicles. Third, there will be energy and repair expenditure savings on account of lower operational costs and the environmental and renewable energy friendly nature of EVs. These savings support increases in consumption of other goods and services as they raise the disposable incomes of households.

However, in the short run at least, many of the impacts might well not be positive. A large share of Canada's economic system is premised on the automobile and its current dependence on the internal combustion engine. In Canada there are currently nine auto assembly plants, 160,000 workers in auto production and parts manufacturing and 336,000 workers in distribution and aftermarket sales and service. Various stakeholders will have concerns about a shift. Auto Dealerships could have reservations about the lower life-cycle maintenance costs of EVs. Vertically integrated petroleum companies could face lost revenues as the transportation sector is a critical end-market for their products. People and firms who repair internal combustion engines and perform other maintenance and owners of gas stations would have valid concerns about the growth prospects of their businesses.

Progress

The economic impact analysis will be dependent on the outputs of other modules.

Some useful preparatory work has already been undertaken. In 2014, the research team worked with the Windfall Ecology Centre to contribute to their related study “The Economic Impact of Electric Vehicle Adoption in Ontario.” In 2015 team members Kubursi and Kanaroglou have worked on a report titled: “The Automotive Sector in Canada: Prospects and Challenges” that it is intended to set a benchmark for the importance of the auto sector as a whole to the Canadian economy. Results are based on a macroeconomic model which ultimately will be run for several realistic scenarios illustrating the adoption of electric vehicles. The scenarios are going to be developed after extensive econometric analysis of survey data collected for Canada and after required inputs from other modules become available.

Quinn Hachey is a Master’s candidate who is involved in research that will support the objectives of this module. His research is on understanding the nature of automotive supply chains and the automotive industry and the extent to which traditional automotive manufacturers will have the wherewithal to be adaptable in the face of disruptive innovations such as the rise of the electric vehicle. Results from this research will provide valuable insight that will support the economic impact analysis.


  • 27 Mar, 2018
  • Current Research, Transportation

Project Description

The project work seeks to achieve two overarching objectives detailed in the following subsections:

  1. To arrive at an understanding of the perceived and desired quality of HSR service from the point of view of a wide range of Hamilton residents including those who use transit regularly or not at all.
  2. To suggest a multi-criteria reconfiguration of HSR service based on the evidence of our data collection and modelling efforts.
HSR partners with McMaster University to ‘re-envision’ Hamilton transit system - Global News

The HSR has announced a partnership with McMaster’s Institute for Transportation and Logistics - 900 CHML Discussion

Media Release
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  • 19 Dec, 2017
  • Current Research, Electric Mobility

How open are Canadian households to electric vehicles? A national latent class choice analysis with willingness-to-pay and metropolitan characterization


  • 05 May, 2016
  • Current Research

Project Description

Objective

“Develop a national set of consumer stated preference data for Canada to serve as input data for the quantification of determinants of EV vehicle purchases relative to other vehicle types”.

Description

The primary focus of this research is to develop an understanding of EV consumers in Canada and the variables that affect their preferences for EVs versus other vehicle alternatives. Since the consumer market for EVs is in its very early stages of development, there is an incomplete picture of how this market will unfold. Meanwhile, there is the potential for EV technology to have a profound impact on society and for multiple stakeholders to be affected. A methodological approach is needed to develop the most complete picture of what is likely to happen, before it happens.

In the case of EVs, very few have been purchased in the Canadian context so it would be impossible to build a large and representative sample to drive a revealed preference econometric model. Fortunately, there are experimental designs and survey data collection methods that focus on the choices households would make under different scenarios of pricing and automobile characteristics. These techniques give rise to stated preference modelling and permit measurement of the potential acceptance of technologies, such as EVs, which have virtually zero market shares at present.

Progress

This is a centerpiece module for the overall study and is of interest to all partners and stakeholders. In addition, its outputs act as inputs for other modules in the project. Accordingly, significant time and effort has gone into progressing this important module over the course of 2014/2015.

The final data collection associated with the consumer stated preference survey took place in May 2015 and about 21,000 observations have been collected over the course of a soft launch, two pilot surveys, and the final data collection. Extensive data has been collected for ten provinces. The approach has been stratified in that less populous provinces have been given disproportionate weight so that sounder conclusions can be drawn province-by-province. The decision was made not to cover the territories due to inadequate coverage by the Research Now consumer panel in those jurisdictions.

It is very important to note that this work has been done in close communication with all partners and stakeholders who have reviewed paper versions of the survey and who have commented on the survey after it was programmed by Research Now. At every stage, ideas from partners and stakeholders have been implemented.

The final survey instrument collected information about:

  • Residential location (Six-digit postal code)
  • Residential context
  • Demographics of the household
  • Car ownership patterns within the household
  • Future plans to purchase vehicles
  • Household parking circumstances
  • Attitudes towards various dimensions linked to electric mobility
  • Vehicle usage patterns

The focus of the survey was a stated preference piece that offered each respondent four scenarios similar to the one pictured below (it appeared much larger in the actual survey). In each scenario, choices were made between gasoline, hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles depending on which vehicle looked most attractive to respondents. A host of vehicle attributes were included on the choice screens to permit future assessment of the importance of each attribute on the choice decision. It was not unusual for respondents to choose different vehicle types across the scenarios.

As part of our mandate, we saw it important to educate respondents about electric mobility and the options that might be open to them that they had not thought much about in the past. The educational component is exemplified through the screen below and other screens which prepared the respondent for the fairly involved choices that would follow.

This survey has been well-received based on feedback from respondents. Full contact information for the research team was provided to all respondents.

This data set has already given rise to one paper that has been submitted to the Journal of Transport Policy and is under review. The paper focuses primarily on the attitudinal data that were collected via the survey. The paper is titled: “Who Will Adopt Electric Vehicles? A Psychographic Segmentation of the Canadian Market for Economy Cars”


  • 02 May, 2016
  • Current Research, Electric Mobility

Project Description

Our Social Costs and Benefits of Electric Mobility in Canada is a five year research project funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) through the Automotive Partnership of Canada (APC). The overall objective of this research is to develop a clear understanding of the wide range of costs and benefits that will emerge in Canada as electric mobility develops and to help prepare the automotive sector, electric utilities, government and other stakeholders for the future.

Currently, this project includes researchers from a variety of disciplines including geography, climate, economics, business, engineering. Our academic researchers are based at McMaster University and the University of Windsor. Industry partners include: the Ford Motor Company, the Canadian Automobile Association, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, Burlington Hydro and Electric Mobility Canada and Purolator.


  • 02 May, 2016
  • Urban Land Use, Transportation, Current Research

Project Description

MITL seeks to estimate the net land value impacts of highway infrastructure by isolating positive benefits of accessibility from negative effects of noise and pollution. Positive net benefits provide a rationale for land value capture to fund highway projects as part of a ‘value planning’ approach.This research is being carried out for the Ontario Ministry of Transportation


  • 02 May, 2016
  • Urban Land Use, Transportation, Current Research

Project Description

This work is being carried out through a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) grant. In the past, academic researchers have tended to focus on metropolitan traffic congestion issues relating to urban sprawl and urban form, the jobs-housing balance and commuting efficiency. These efforts have been weighted primarily to economic impacts and secondarily to environmental impacts with minimal attention paid to the underlying causes of the Canadian congestion phenomenon. Over a five year period, this research will produce one of the most comprehensive examinations of congestion in Canada ever taken. Congestion in Canada will be studied in terms of how it can be measured, what causes it, what implications it has and what policies ought to be prescribed to deal with it.