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Getting all charged up in Kamloops
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 Jessica Wallace, November 16, 2015 - Kamloops This Week

The licence plate on Brock Nanson’s Tesla says it all: “EVOLVD”.

The Kamloops engineer has crunched the numbers — solar panels on his Sahali home can charge his electric vehicle for an average of 28,000 kilometres annually.

“I’m generating an offset,” Nanson told KTW. “Hydro is my battery.”

Nanson went electric because “it’s green” and Colin Noble, an advisor at Twin Rivers Financial Services Inc., has made Nanson’s evolution a little easier while the technology continues to grow.

Noble is behind Kamloops’ newest electric-vehicle charging station, located in the parking lot of the Sun Life Financial office on West Victoria Street.

“Just customer service,” Noble said during a media launch yesterday, noting he has clients who own electric vehicles.

The station has two chargers — one designed specifically for Teslas and a more universal one accommodating vehicles like the Nissan Leaf.

When Nanson pops into Sun Life for a one-hour meeting with Noble, he can park his Tesla in front of the “Electric Vehicle parking only” sign, plug in and gain about 50 kilometres’ worth of charge.

“A happy Tesla’s a plugged-in Tesla,” Nanson said. “You just plug it in where you can and you never go to a gas station.”

Installation was about $1,000 and it costs about $2.50 for each full charge, said Bryan Tolbert, regional manager of Sun Country Highway, a private Canadian company spreading the technology across Canada and the U.S.

Noble won’t be charging for charging and the new station is open to the public —  but that doesn’t mean Kamloops residents will be lining up outside his office.

Nanson is one of about six Tesla owners in Kamloops — it’s like a little club, he said with a laugh, adding they all know each other — and Noble has about four clients with electric vehicles.

“That’s where our job comes in,” Tolbert said.

“To ensure in all areas, territories and locations, it’s accessible. If we can do that, it’s just going to make it that much easier for the general public to wanna buy electric vehicles and continue to grow the concept.”

Nanson said people have misconceptions about price and performance when it comes to electric vehicles.

“If people actually look at what they pay for their car, in terms of fuel, in terms of maintenance, depreciation, and then actually factor in the life of the car, you realize you’re paying a lot for that car,” he said.

“The Tesla, there’s really no maintenance to speak of. There’s a little blue lid you put windshield washer fluid in. That’s the end of the serviceable parts.”

The new station adds to those in the River City, with other chargers at the Visitor Information Centre across from Aberdeen Mall and at the Tournament Capital Centre.

The Best Western hotel on Columbia Street also has two chargers for guests.

While electric-vehicle owners usually plug in at home, destination charging stations help top up while in town and support longer road trips.

Read more at Kamloops This Week