Provide incentives to purchase electric vehicles (cars or bikes).
Many subsidies exist in the USA and Ontario. Vancouver will be one of the first markets to have the Nissan Leaf launch in, but we do not have any subsidies for EVs. Promote EVs now!
David C. commented
I agree with Janna L. Sylvest's comment since its true that to build a regular gasoline or electric vehicle the carbon footprint and environmental impact is huge, and the same goes for almost every item you've surrounded your existence with.....We live in an energy intensive, nature ravaging society/ economy and I would encourage all of you to view and share this brilliant video/website with everyone: http://www.storyofstuff.com/
A change of path is fundamental but I do support Kody's and Heba Y's idea on incentives for electric vehicles as a transitional idea. An idea that will act as a bridge to a new energy economy an idea that will possibly reduce the huge carbon footprint of the ICU (internal combustion engine). Unfortunately the majority of people will continue buying cars to drive to the local supermarket and will continue buying their Ipods, LCD TV's and appliances because they are addicted to stuff and to a lifestyle that is destroying our planet. We need to find and implement bridge idea's like this one and many many other to transition into a viable and sustainable future.
Sure transit, bikes and local produce are better and I fully support that, but there will always be those who will drive their vehicles and buy not local. So for that reason I say yes to incentives and yes to electric cars and yes to any other bridge idea out there that will buy us some time...
Note, this idea has been merged with Heba Y.'s idea "Plug-in hybrid/electric vehicle rebates"
"Introduce strong rebates with the help of the Provincial Government to encourage the purchase of electric and plug-in hybrids. Set a target of 1 in 15 of all vehicles in the city to be plug-in/hybrid/electric by 2020.
Ontario offers rebates of between $4,000 and $10,000 to every consumer buying a plug-in hybrid car and battery electric car we can do better. Free parking for these vehicles would be an incentive as well."
Janna L. Sylvest commented
In supporting a move from petroleum fueled cars to electric-fueled cars, I hope that people keep in mind that the lesser foot print is to reduce overall car ownership and use. The carbon footprint of producing a new car, whatever its fuel base, is enormous. Rapid, accessible, transit and pedestrian infrastructure is a better outcome than a change in the way cars are fueled. 78% of Manhattan residents do not own cars. Car co-ops, less cars per household, and less use of existing cars ... that's a worthwhile goal. The other thing to keep in mind is that electricity is only as "green" as the source used to generate the electricity. Most places in the world generate electricity from coal or nuclear sources. And even in BC, BC Hydro purchases a significant amount of power generated from natural gas burning generation plants. Additionally, hydro generation from water has enviromental impacts. The flooding of plains and wet lands, the disruption of fish habitat, etc. This is not to say that electric cars are "evil", it's to say that transit and pedestrian-friendly corridors to and from transit, are better.