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Zero-Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative

The Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change (PCF) is Canada’s plan to work with the provinces and territories to reduce GHG emissions by 30% from 2005 levels by 2030. Given that the transportation sector accounts for approximately 25% of Canada’s GHG emissions, making it the second largest emitting sector in Canada, the PCF includes a dedicated transportation strategy that commits the Government of Canada to work with all levels of governments and industry stakeholders to lay the foundation for coordinated to put more zero-emission vehicles on the road.

Furthermore, the Generation Energy Council report outlines several pathways to transform Canada’s energy sector, including through smarter use of energy and switching to cleaner power. The report states specific targets for the electrification of transport, that by 2030, 30% of new vehicle sales are EVs and a national charging network is in place.

Thus, the Government of Canada remains steadfast in its conviction that the electrification of transportation is key to decarbonizing the sector, transitioning to a low-carbon future and achieving our target of net zero emissions by 2050. That is why, the Government of Canada has set ambitious federal targets for  zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) reaching 10% of new light-duty vehicles (LDV) sales per year by 2025, 30% by 2030 and 100% by 2040.

Natural Resources Canada supports the effort to transition transportation to lower-carbon options by delivering initiatives designed to increase awareness, availability and use of lower-carbon transportation options.

Buying a vehicle is one of the largest financial decisions that Canadians make. Broad uptake of ZEVs will require transformative societal change and concerted government efforts to address critical impediments. The lack of consumer awareness of ZEVs is one of the key barriers to adoption on a wider scale. Given that ZEVs are fuelled and maintained differently, consumers need to be sensitized to how they work, and have proof that a ZEV can provide an equal or better driving experience and value, compared to a conventional vehicle. Addressing consumers’ awareness needs is critical in order to move Canadians through the consumer continuum to ZEV adoption.

To address these challenges, Natural Resources Canada’s Zero-Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative supports projects that aim to increase awareness of ZEVs, and public charging and refueling infrastructure, through education and capacity-building activities to ultimately support a greater adoption of ZEVs by Canadians.

Request for Proposals

Natural Resources Canada’s Zero-Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative is now accepting applications for funding until September 15, 2020 at 23:59 (Eastern Daylight Time) for projects to be completed no later than March 31, 2021.

This funding will be delivered through cost-sharing contribution agreements for new projects that aim to address awareness gaps among Canadians on ZEV technologies.

The maximum contribution amount payable per project will not exceed $50,000. The Initiative will pay up to 50% of total project costs.


The 2020 Request for Proposals of the Zero-Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative is now closed. NRCan will target having funding decisions by end of October 2020.

Application Package

To request the application package, please send an email to with “Zero-Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative – Request Application Package” in the subject line.

Please include the following information:

  • Primary contact first and last name
  • Organization
  • Mailing address
  • Primary contact telephone number
  • Primary contact email address
  • Project name
  • Project Summary

Potential Applicants

Potential applicants should read the Applicant's Guide to learn more about eligibility and other requirements.

Eligibility Requirements

1. Eligible Recipients

Individuals and legal entities validly incorporated or registered in Canada including not-for-profit and for-profit organizations such as:

  • Electricity or gas utilities
  • Companies
  • Industry associations
  • Research associations
  • Standards organizations
  • Indigenous and community groups
  • Academic institutions
  • Provincial, territorial, regional or municipal governments or their departments or agencies where applicable

International legal entities validly incorporated or registered abroad including for-profit and not-for-profit organizations such as:

  • Companies
  • Industry associations
  • Research associations
  • Standards organizations
  • Academic institutions.

2. Eligible Projects

The Initiative will provide funding for new or the expansion of existing activities that take place in Canada.

The following list is not exhaustive and is meant to simply illustrate the type of activities that could address Canadians’ awareness gaps about ZEVs. The Initiative encourages innovative projects that address barriers to the adoption of ZEVs in Canada. Proposals could include the following activities, but are not limited to:

  • Developing and implementing a targeted outreach and awareness campaign
  • Establishing a web-based resource and information portal
  • Implementing a test drive and trial program, e.g. ride-and-drive events
  • Establishing showcase facilities including mobile showcases that display ZEVs
  • Implementing an electric vehicle mentor or ambassador program
  • Undertaking actions to increase workplace charging awareness among employees
  • Undertaking actions to increase visibility of charging infrastructure
  • Increasing knowledge of EV charging options and technologies among potential end-users
  • Developing curriculum and/or training material for a target audience
  • Developing best practices guides and educational tools to support targeted audiences
  • Virtual meetings, presentations, technology demonstrations or other events with remote attendance options

3. Eligible Expenditures

Eligible expenditures for an approved project under the Initiative must be directly related to, and necessary for, the implementation and conduct of the project and will include:

  • Salary and benefits;
  • Professional services (e.g. scientific, technical, management; contracting; engineering; construction; installation, testing and commissioning of equipment; training; marketing; data collection; logistics; maintenance; printing; and distribution);
  • Reasonable travel costs, including transportation, meals and accommodation;
  • Capital expenses, including informatics and other equipment or infrastructure;
  • Rental fees or leasing costs;
  • License fees and permits;
  • Costs associated with environmental assessments;
  • GST, PST and HST net of any tax rebate to which the recipient is entitled; and
  • Overhead expenses directly related to the project will be considered to a maximum of 15% of eligible expenditures.

4. Non-eligible Expenditures

Costs not considered eligible expenditures under this Initiative will include:

  • In-kind*;
  • Land costs;
  • Legal costs; and
  • Costs incurred outside the eligible expenditure period, including those for preparing this application.

* In-kind contributions from the proponent and its partners count towards the total project costs. If you choose to include In-kind support as part of the total project costs, it must be verifiable and directly in support of the project. Further details are available in Appendix 1 of this document.

How to Apply

NRCan prefers to receive your proposal in electronic format by email at The application form must be submitted as a Word file and the applicant must separately print and sign the attestation page, scanning and sending the signed version as a PDF. Additional supporting documentation, saved as Word, Excel or PDF formats, must also accompany the application.

Note: the maximum size of email attachments to Natural Resources Canada is 10MB. If the submission exceeds the maximum, the applicant may forward their files in a series of emails with the same subject line. Natural Resources Canada is not responsible for the security of the files during transmission.

Having Technical Problems

If you are having technical problems, please contact and provide the following information:

  • First and last name
  • Telephone number
  • Description of the problem or error message of the page where you are experiencing the problem
  • Computer operating system and version
  • Adobe Reader version
  • Internet browser and version
  • As much information as possible about the steps you took before you experienced the problem

Important note:The submission of an application creates no obligation on the part of Natural
Resources Canada to provide funding for the proposed project.

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