ZEVIP: Funding available for Canadians

ZEVIP: Funding available for Canadians

Battery electric cars are gaining more momentum as a viable choice of transportation for Canadians. The Canadian government has put forth targets of EV sales of 10% by 2025, 30% by 2030 and 100% by 2040.  But there are still hurdles to overcome. One important hurdle is the financial commitment to purchasing an electric vehicle. With rebates and incentives, Canadians can get access to electric vehicles with over 400 km of range for under $40,000. By comparison, “Nova Scotia noted an average new internal combustion vehicle price of $37,025”.

Furthermore, the environmental benefits of electric vehicles are clear. Even for an electricity grid powered primarily by coal fired plants, the emissions from an electric vehicle are far lower than an internal combustion vehicle.

Kamiya writes “simulation results find that, compared to 2015, 2050 fleet average PEV emissions are 40–52% lower in British Columbia, 57–74% lower in Alberta, and 36–46% lower in Ontario. Overall, we find that PEVs offer substantial GHG emissions benefits compared to conventional vehicles in all scenarios explored” (George Kamiya, 2019). Thus, the environmental benefits are clear, and the financial element of the discussion is beginning to make sense. One final hurdle to address however, is the accessibility of charging stations for these vehicles. Natural Resource Canada’s “Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program”, ZEVIP for short, aims to address this discrepancy.

One round of request for applications has already closed June 11th, that targeted multi unit residential buildings (MURBs), workplaces and light duty vehicle fleets. Subsequent rounds of applications will be targeting public places and street parking. The breakdown of funding is shown below:

Source: Natural Resources Canada

Transportation in Canada is on the verge of a colossal shift, and the way in which we fuel our vehicles is going to fundamentally change. We will be fueling intermittently at our homes and at our places of work and play. Overcoming the barrier of access to charging is a major step and Canada’s ZEVIP program is working to address this.

If you’re interested in learning more about the eligibility requirements, application process, or want to apply, reach out to our PV specialist via matt@catalystsales.ca and we’ll help you out.

Solar for your Home: What’s the ROI?

Solar for your Home: What’s the ROI?

The generation of electricity using solar photovoltaic cells has been around since the 1950’s. Early users of the technology were limited to research deployments, government agencies like NASA or in niche applications such as on remote lighthouses and oil rigs. Then, in the 1970’s the use of solar cells for residential applications started to gain in popularity for both the environmentally conscious and for those where grid accessibility was limited. Fast forward to today, where advances in solar cell manufacturing and solar cell technology itself, has widened the viability of solar PV to all.


In the early days of solar PV technology, the motivating factors to adopt the technology as a homeowner, were only for those fierce environmentalists and those who had no other options. Now, we are seeing the final hurdle, the financial merit of solar, being cleared. Through a combination of falling costs and government incentives available in the maritimes, there is no better time as an Atlantic Canadian homeowner to invest in a solar PV system.


solar energy halifax nova scotia

In Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick there are lucrative incentives available to help offset the upfront cost of an installation. The average maritime home can support a 9 kW system which comes at an average cost of about $2.90 / W installed. Utilizing available rebates and tax incentives, this average system will come in at less than $20,000 cost to a homeowner and can potentially eliminate a power bill from day one. When factoring in the electrical bill offset achieved by this system, payback periods are as low as 8 years with ROI values greater than 11%. For comparison, the world’s top performing stock market index, the S&P 500, has yielded an average ROI of just 8% over the last 50 years. Furthermore, a residential solar PV array is not just an investment in offsetting electricity bills, its also an investment in your home! A Berkeley National Labs study found that the installation of a solar PV system can increase a property’s value by up to 20%. At a minimum, an investment in solar is a 1:1 ratio of cash to property equity.


In the past, solar PV was a niche technology, reserved for the use of space agencies and devout environmentalists. Now, a solar PV is one of the smartest investments that can be made for a homeowner.


Want to learn more? Contact our PV designer, Matt Donovan, matt@catalystsales.ca, or get a free solar assessment for your home here.

COVID-19 Front Line Counter Shields and Temporary Power Solutions

COVID-19 Front Line Counter Shields and Temporary Power Solutions

covid-19 shields and temporary power solutions

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of our manufacturers have begun producing new products, aimed at helping to fill the recent need for certain safety items. In an effort to help get these products to those who need them, we’ve listed the current available products and would love for you to share them with anyone /any business that you think can benefit from them.

The two main categories are EXM’s counter shields and Legrand’s temporary power solutions.


EXM counter shields

In an effort to help protect our frontline workers, EXM is now manufacturing a polycarbonate counter shield which aims to reduce the exposure to the virus and other contaminants. This protective screen forms a physical barrier between your front-line employees and your customers.

They offer 3 customizable designs to suit all types of needs and can manufacture the product in three days. These can be used anywhere that a protective barrier is needed between an employee and the public, including grocery stores, hospitals, retail stores, etc.

You can find more information here or by sending us an email to lierin@catalystsales.ca


To meet the rapidly increasing demand for both temporary and permanent health care sites, Legrand has introduced a new line of power solutions. These solutions bring power to temporary hospital and health care sites and are currently being used in New York City, one of the hardest hit areas in North America.

The solutions include the following.

wiremold medical grade plug in outlets

Hospital Grade Plug-In Outlet Centres

Wiremold ULM Series of Medical Grade Plug-In Outlet Center Units (PIOCs) offer medical professionals quick and flexible power delivery in these demanding patient care environments. Designed to withstand the rigors of a hospital setting, they feature a rugged aluminum housing, hospital grade receptacles, and redundant bonding to ensure an ultra reliable grounding path.

Learn more here.


Legrand GFCIs

Portable GFCIs

Legrand now offers a range of portable GFCIs to bring power anywhere it’s needed. Rugged and reliable, they can be used to supply power to almost anything required, including power tools, high-pressure power washers, wet vacuums, groundskeeping equipment, portable signs and more.

Learn more here.


Cable protectors

The cable protectors ensure you stay connected and protect any cords and cables from damage. The protectors are available in standard 5 channel (27K lb) and heavy-duty 3 channel (50K lb), and they Include tie-down holes for safety and convenient molded-in handles for easy transport.

Learn more here.


Power distribution units

The power distribution units will be available in late April and will be available in three versions. Not only are they more durable than any other PDUs on the market, but they are all outdoor-rated as well.

You can learn more about Legrand’s temporary power products for healthcare crises here.

Please pass this information along to anyone / any business that you think could benefit from these products. And if you have any questions, please reach out at any time to us at lierin@catalystsales.ca.

Join Our FREE Webinar Series

Join Our FREE Webinar Series

Catalyst Webinar Series

With so many of us working from home over the next few weeks, we saw this as a great opportunity to connect and learn together online. That’s why we put together our new webinar series, open to everyone in the industry, to share our insider knowledge, industry trends, how our business will change through electrification and what we can do to be ready for it.

Join us online Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11am and 1 pm AST, where we’ll break down the latest industry trends in information packed 30-minute sessions.


Tuesday, March 24, 2020  –  11:00 AM AST

  • Future of Renewables – How it will affect the electrical industries from solar to battery storage
    • Sign Up Here

Tuesday, March 24, 2020  –  1:00 PM AST

  • Future of Renewables – How it will affect the electrical industries from solar to battery storage

Thursday, March 26, 2020  –  11:00 AM AST

Thursday, March 26, 2020  –  1:00 PM AST

Tuesday, March 31, 2020  –  11:00 AM AST

  • Forging a Clean & Electrified Future – Electrical Vehicle (EV) Charging

Tuesday, March 31, 2020  –  1:00 PM AST

  • Forging a Clean & Electrified Future – Electrical Vehicle (EV) Charging

Thursday, April 2, 2020  –  11:00 AM AST

Thursday, April 2, 2020  –  1:00 PM AST

Stay tuned for more upcoming webinars, and if you have a topic you’d like covered, reach out to us at any time at taylor@catalystsales.ca.


This Program is Helping Workplaces Save Big on Electric Vehicle Charging Installations

This Program is Helping Workplaces Save Big on Electric Vehicle Charging Installations

Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program

In last week’s blog post, we talked about the exciting future of electric vehicles (EVs) in Atlantic Canada. We’re expecting to see massive growth in the market, and it’s estimated that by 2040, 25% of the vehicles on the road will be electric. Up until now, cost has been one of the main hinderances to adoption, but that is starting to change, and the government’s new Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program (ZEVIP) is one of the factors behind this.

The new program targets multi-unit residential buildings (three or more units), workplaces, and light-duty vehicle fleets (ex. taxis) and pays up to 50% of the Total Project Costs (up to five million dollars) for the installation of EV chargers. The program is also open for public parking areas, such as service stations, libraries, restaurants, medical offices, etc.

This program is one of the latest funding programs from Natural Resources Canada’s (NRCan) Electric Vehicle and Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Deployment Initiative. The Government of Canada has set ambitious goals for federal electrification, and this program, among others, is part of their goal of zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) reaching 10% of light-duty vehicles (LDV) sales per year by 2025, 30% by 2030 and 100% by 2040.

Enel-X Juicebox

Photo: powerpulse.net

Funding varies depending on the type of charging station, and details are as follows:

Type of InfrastructureOutputMaximum Funding
Level 2 (208 / 240 V) connectors3.3kW to 19.2kWUp to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $5,000 per connector
Fast charger20kW to 49kWUp to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $15,000 per fast-charger
Fast charger50kW and aboveUp to 50% of total project costs, to a maximum of $50,000 per fast-charger

The program is open for applicants until May 12, 2020. Eligibility details are outlined here and you can request an application package on NRCan’s website.

At Catalyst, we are excited to be a part of the future of electrification in Atlantic Canada as the Atlantic reps for Enel-X’s Juicebox Smart Electric Vehicle Chargers. The Juicebox chargers are some of the best on the market- they are simple to install and feature app technology, easy to use payment systems, and commercial, fleet, and utility management systems.

You can learn more about Enel-X’s Juicebox chargers here or reach out to Matt, our Renewable Energy Specialist, at matt@catalystsales.ca


Here’s What You Need to Know About the Future of Electric Vehicles in Atlantic Canada

Here’s What You Need to Know About the Future of Electric Vehicles in Atlantic Canada

Enel-X Juicebox

Photo: powerpulse.net

When we think about renewables, we often think of the energy source itself, like solar power, but another huge player in the renewable industry is electric vehicles (EVs). The adoption of electric vehicles has had a slow start up until now, but they are expected to have a massive growth in Atlantic Canada over the next decade. Here’s what we can expect in the next ten years (and why we should all be excited about it).

Massive growth over the next decade

According to a recent report put out by HRM’s clean energy specialist, Kevin Boutilier, Nova Scotia had 176 electric vehicles in 2019 and that number is expected to jump to 8761 by 2020- a mind blowing jump in just one year. In 2019, there were 413 electric vehicles in Atlantic Canada, and this number is expected to continue to rapidly climb, and by 2030, estimates show that we should have almost 229 728 electric vehicles on the road. That number represents 10% of the vehicles in Atlantic Canada, and this is expected to rise to 25% by 2040.

enel X electric vehicle chargers

More EVs = more EV chargers

With this huge growth in EVs will come the need for more EV chargers. Currently in Nova Scotia, we have 40 charging stations (see location directory here), but the report estimates that we will need 2000 stations in the province by 2030 to accommodate the adoption of electric vehicles.

At Catalyst, we rep Enel-X’s Juicebox Smart Electric Vehicle Chargers. In 2019, we brought sustainability and renewables to the forefront of our company’s mission, and we are thrilled that partnering with Enel-X has given us the chance to enter the EV market. The Juicebox chargers are some of the best on the market- they are simple to install and feature app technology, easy to use payment systems, and commercial, fleet, and utility management systems.

What’s behind the growth?

Enel-XUp until recently, Atlantic Canada has seen a relatively slow adoption rate of electric vehicles, but as we can see, this is now changing. Much like solar power and other forms of renewable energy, electric vehicles were seen as something accessible only to the wealthy and were not affordable for the average person. However, the market isn’t what it used to be, and there are newer models available that are more affordable than ever before.

Not only that, but the savings in fuel are drastic, and as gas prices continue to rise, this is an increasingly attractive motivator for many Atlantic Canadians.

In his report, Boutilier looked at the savings that HRM would get from switching just 11 of their fleet vehicles to electric. He found that they would save $134 167 (or 19% of their budget) and reduce emissions by 292 tonnes (62% reduction in CO2 emissions) over the lifetime of the vehicles.




We are thrilled to be a part of this amazing development of the EV market in Atlantic Canada and are here to answer any of your questions! You can learn more about Enel-X’s Juicebox chargers here or reach out to Matt, our Renewable Energy Specialist, at matt@catalystsales.ca

Interested in Solar Energy? CUA’s Energy Efficiency Financing Program Can Help

Interested in Solar Energy? CUA’s Energy Efficiency Financing Program Can Help

solar energy halifax nova scotia
We’ve written before about the solar energy financing and rebate programs available in Nova Scotia, and today we wanted to share another option that is making the adoption of a solar energy system even more affordable for Nova Scotians: CUA’s Energy Efficiency Financing Program.

CUA’s program offers a number of great benefits, some of which extend beyond the other current programs available, and it’s a great option for anyone in Nova Scotia looking to make efficiency upgrades to their current system.

The program offers financing options for both home and business owners interested in investing in energy-efficient upgrades. We’ve seen a major surge in interest for solar energy throughout the province, and having another financing option available is a huge win for the renewable energy industry in Nova Scotia.

solar energy atlantic canada

One thing that really stands out here is that CUA’s financing program isn’t just available for solar panels and installations, but for a range of energy efficiency upgrades, including heat pumps, LED lighting solutions, windows, insulation, and other work required to maximize the upgrade.

Another great benefit of the program is that CUA works one-on-one with you to help you get the most out of their financing options. They’ll walk you through exactly how the project can best fit into your current financial plan and provide you with the best financing options for you.

CUA’s Energy Efficiency Financing Program is one more way that switching to solar is becoming easier and more affordable than ever. At Catalyst, we want to help make the switch even easier, which is why we offer free solar assessments. Just fill out our short form, and we’ll have your solar assessment back to you within 48 hours.

For the most up-to-date information about financing rates, head over to cua.com/gogreen or contact a member of the CUA team at 902-492-6500.

Interested in making the switch to solar? Get our free solar assessment here.

How to Become a Solar Installer in PEI

How to Become a Solar Installer in PEI

solar installer PEI

Thanks to new rebates and incentive programs, as well as advances in technology, solar energy has recently experienced significant growth in PEI (and beyond) and is predicted to only continue to grow. For electricians in the province, receiving accreditation as a Solar Photovoltaic Installer (SPVI) is an appealing (and lucrative!) career move. In today’s post, we’re covering everything you need to know to become a solar installer in PEI.

Mandatory requirements for achieving solar installer status.

1. Applicants must be existing (or applying) NoE members.

2. All new and existing SPVI must have and maintain a current Red Seal Electrician under engagement for all solar installation work and submit corresponding License number to efficiencyPEI.

3. Maintain an annual CanSIA Membership. The fee is typically $1000/year, but a first-year discounted price of $500 is available (only accessible through julie@cansia.ca).

4. Successful completion of a 4-day solar training course. The course is conducted by the Canadian Solar Institute (CSI) and will be offered in PEI in the summer of 2020, with cost and date to be confirmed. The course will be followed by an evaluation, and an unsuccessful training evaluation will require a re-sit.

Prior to the summer training program, contractors will also have the option to take a challenge exam, which if passed, will allow them to bypass the training.

catalyst sales solar energy atlantic canada nova scotia

Probationary status

While the training program isn’t scheduled to be held until next summer, efficiencyPEI is offering a probationary period that will allow qualified contractors to execute solar installs for a 3-month time span, prior to training. Qualification for this probation period is contingent on the following demonstrated competencies.

  • Understanding electrical fundamentals.
  • Solar energy principles. Ability to calculate solar energy potential of a site. This is a service that Catalyst provides.
  • Understanding solar panel data sheets. Contractors need to be able to read and interpret a solar panel data sheet. Catalyst offers solar panels data sheets for installs, as well as calculations for max string and array sizing.
  • Understanding inverter data sheets. Contractors also need to be able to read and interpret inverter data sheets, which Catalyst can provide.
  • Contractors must also know the difference between racking for a ground or rooftop mount.

How Catalyst can help

To recap, Catalyst is able to create all of the site plans and data sheets for a solar install. We can also be present at a contractor’s first install to make sure everything runs smoothly. For all solar inquiries, you can contact our Renewable Energy Specialist, Matt, at matt@catalystsales.ca or 226-376-4057.

You can also learn more about the solar services we offer, here.

There’s never been a better time to get involved in solar, and we love that efficiencyPEI is making it simple for electrical contractors to get involved. For more info, check out their website, or reach out to us with any questions.



The Future of Renewables: The Latest Industry Trends from Solar Power International 2019

The Future of Renewables: The Latest Industry Trends from Solar Power International 2019

north america smart energy week solar power international

As you may have seen on our LinkedIn and Instagram, our team was down at Solar Power International’s (SPI) Smart Energy Week in Salt Lake City last week. It was an action-packed week, and we got the opportunity to connect with industry leaders and fellow renewable energy enthusiasts and learn about the latest industry trends, product development, and marketplace shifts. The renewable industry is starting to take off here in Atlantic Canada, and we’re so excited about the new innovations and what they will mean for our distributors, contractors, homeowners, and our region as a whole.

Our renewable lines, Canadian Solar, SolarEdge, Kinetic, and AP Systems were all in attendance as well. You can learn more about our lines here.

Among the many exciting trends and product developments, three really stood out.


First, we identified electric vehicle chargers that will work for both commercial and residential spaces. We believe that this will mark a huge step in helping our customer base make the pivot towards global electrification. Not only can EV chargers offer vehicle charging for both home and work, but with WIFI capabilities and partners like EVMatch, the home and business owner can actually rent out their chargers while they are not in use and get paid directly through on-demand services like EVMatch.

Take a look at some of our favourites:

ev chargers nova scotiaLeft to right: JuiceBox Pro 32, 40,or 75 (must be WiFi-enabled), ClipperCreek HCS-40, JuiceNet Edition, AeroVironment EVSE-RS, JuiceNet Edition


Second, something that is especially exciting in the wake of last month’s Hurricane Dorian, was the emergence of electric generators. These generators will eliminate the need for gas powered generators and will be a huge asset for homeowners and during power outages.

A few of our favourites:

Left to right: Goal Zero Yeti 1250 Portable Power Station, Lion Safari LT Power Generator


Last, and most importantly, was the battery storage, which has significant applications for NS. Currently, with grid tied net metering programs making it cost prohibitive to have battery storage, few companies are offering practical solutions for batteries paired with solar. However, this option offers major benefits, like having back-up power from your batteries when power is out.

Customers can also charge their batteries at night during off peak (low cost power) times and then consume/back feed the power during the day during peak (high cost power) times. Another financial benefit of battery storage, and what we will see most commonly from their implementation in Atlantic Canada, is demand side load management. This allows power companies to buy power from your stored batteries when they need it to match shifts in demand. With a central control system from the utility and a compatible battery system, this is already an emerging trend in some markets.

Two manufacturers who really stood out were SolarEdge and their StorEdge Solutions, and Sonnen Group.

These are just a few of the many new developments in the renewable energy landscape. There has never been a better time to make the switch to solar energy, and we’ve committed ourselves to helping to grow and support the solar energy industry in Atlantic Canada. You can learn more about our solar energy services here.

For homeowners, we’re offering free solar energy assessments for your home. Simply fill out our form, and we’ll get back to you within 48 hours with your full report and connect you to a local contractor in your area.

For distributors, we rep four of the top solar lines on the market. You can learn more about the lines here.

Our week at SPI confirmed what we already knew- the future is solar, and we’re thrilled to be playing a role in supporting this future.

To learn more about the exhibition, you can visit the SPI website, and to learn more about our involvement in solar energy, visit our solar page here.