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3 entries from June 2019

Electric Vehicle Charging Sparks Opportunities for More Than Drivers

It’s been a few months since we announced the completion of our first electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. The EV fast chargers at our Milton, ON stations are the first in a coast-to-coast network of more than 50 stations being built this year.

Petro-Canada EV Charger in Milton

These chargers offer opportunities for more than Canadian drivers. The owners and operators of the stations where the EV chargers are being installed are keen to get on board. We spoke with Mathi Valautham, the operator of the Milton station:

I was so excited when I heard that our station had been selected to have the network’s first EV fast chargers. When we first launched, we initially had four to five customers a day, but those numbers have quickly begun to multiply. It’s been a learning process for me because it’s a completely new offering for my customers, but I am eager to learn more about electric vehicles and charging because I believe this will be a part of Canada’s mobility future.

You can hear more from Mathi, as well as from the project lead and one of our technology experts, in the video below.

Have you tried out the EV charger in Milton? We’d love to hear about your experience in the comments!

- Braden H.

First Nations-owned Petro-Canada Stations: A strong investment and source of pride

In a recent PumpTalk post, I mentioned how local Petro-Canada owners don't just operate a gas station, but are important contributors to their communities – among other things, they build playgrounds, inspire local immigrant women to become entrepreneurs and donate their time to charitable causes.

This community aspect of Petro-Canada stations is especially evident in sites that are First Nation owned and operated. The Ochapowace Nation recently opened a new Petro-Canada location in Pilot Butte, SK. It is the 30th First Nation owned and operated site in our network - something we are very proud of.

Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada

One of our long time First Nations sites is owned and operated by the Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc (TteS) Band, in the Kamloops area of British Columbia. The Kamloops Indian Band Development Corporation (KIBDC) partnered with Suncor to convert an existing gas station to the Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada in 2012. The Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada has been a very successful business, winning Kamloops Chamber of Commerce 2014 Aboriginal Business of the Year. 

I had an opportunity to discuss with Kukpi7 Rosanne Casimir, the Tk’emlups chief, how the Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada fits into her band's economic and community plans.

Chief/Kukpi7 Rosanne Casimir
Chief/Kukpi7 Rosanne Casimir - Photo Courtesy of Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc

Q. What were the goals when you set out to open this station?
A. We knew that we wanted an investment that would maximize its return as well as provide a growth opportunity. We also wanted to provide employment opportunities for our membership. Partnering with a recognized fuel brand like Petro-Canada helped us build a strong relationship with TteS band members.

Q. How does the station fit into your economic development plan.
A. We want our business investments to generate revenue that we can re-invest into new business opportunities for our members. The Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada helps provide that revenue. Our economic plan also calls for opening businesses that meet tourism needs as well as creating employment opportunities for band members. The Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada fulfills these aspects of the plan. The TteS Petro-Canada, boasts astounding numbers during our PowWow Event, serving thousands on a daily basis.

Q. What has this station meant to the community?
A. Band members are proud to be employed in our businesses that have relationships with large corporations like Suncor and Petro-Canada. Plus, they are proud of the community ownership of a successful business that has won awards through the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce as well as the BC Achievement Foundation who named it Community-owned Business of the Year in 2016. Also, the Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada gives our indigenous youth entry-level employment opportunities to help them succeed in moving along their career path.

Award Video about the Tk'emlups Petro Canada/Carwash courtesy of the BC Achievement Foundation

Q. Is there anything else that you would like us to know about your Nation and/or the business?
A. We are pleased that Petro-Canada respects our culture by creating initiatives for indigenous people. Whether it is through indigenous bursaries or contributions to a cultural park, we are happy with these programs that promote strong relationships between our membership, indigenous people and Petro-Canada. Regarding the Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada in particular, all revenues are utilized for growth and for programs and services that are offered to TteS membership. We are very proud of the legacy it is creating.

Thank you, Kukpi7 Casimir, for taking the time to share the success of the Tk’emlúps Petro-Canada and the positive impact it is having on the Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc (TteS) Band!

- Rose R.

The AJAC’s EcoRun Comes to Alberta

Summer vacation is imminent. Which means the arrival of the annual summer visit from my mother-in-law is also imminent. I’ve been looking for fun places for us to visit. We’ve done trips to Kelowna and Victoria, but it may be time to go further afoot. Time to visit Alberta.

2019 AJAC EcoRun

Coincidentally, it’s also time for the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada’s annual EcoRun. And this year, it’s headed to Alberta! I was checking out their route and they are visiting some great places:

The AJAC’s annual EcoRun shows off a variety of eco-friendly vehicles, which include pure electrics, plug-in and conventional hybrids, hydrogen fuel cells, diesel-fuelled powertrains and highly-efficient gasoline options. They select a different area of the country each year to test out a number of vehicles. Last year they were in New Brunswick. This year’s run through Alberta includes twenty different eco-friendly vehicles; you can check out the full list on their site.

This year’s route through Alberta is 920 KM. In addition to testing out a variety of vehicles, participating journalists will also be competing to win the Green Jersey – awarded to the driver with the best overall eco-driving record on the EcoRun. The journalists also gather real-world driving and fuel economy stats on these eco-friendly vehicles that they then share with consumers through their media outlets. If you’re not familiar with the EcoRun, check out the AJAC’s video after last year’s EcoRun in New Brunswick.

This year, Petro-Canada is proud to be a sponsor of AJAC’s EcoRun and we’re looking forward to greeting the EcoRunners at our Canmore station and chatting about our new EV fast charging stations. Plus, some of our team will be following the run. You can check out our Instagram for some pics from the road.

- Rose R.