This article examines Quebec’s stated position of banning gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035 and the implications that statement has for the rest of Canada.

Getting Started

Introduction to the article (perhaps by having everyone read it)

Zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) are nothing new. The electric car market has been increasing in Canada for a number of years. What is new is Quebec’s stated position of banning the sale of gas-powered passenger vehicles by 2035. This has obvious implications. British Columbia is the only other province putting emphasis on zero-emission vehicles. If the other provinces don’t begin to address this issue they could find themselves out-manoeuvred by Quebec. In particular Ontario, with its large automobile manufacturing base, could see negative economic results. Quebec is taking this step in an effort to address climate change and, in doing so, has placed a challenge in front of the other provinces. This lesson will have the students, through the use of group work, research the impact that ZEVs could have on our efforts to address climate change.

Subject Area(s) covered

Environmental studies, world issues, economics, politics

New Terms to explain


Materials Needed

  • Access to the article for the students
  • Ability to consult in groups of three – either in person or virtually
  • Access to the Internet for research
Study and Discussion Activity

Key things students can learn from this lesson

  • The impact that the development of ZEVs can have on our pollution levels;
  • The economic impact resulting from the development of these vehicles;

Action (here’s how we’ll do it)

  • Begin by placing the students in triads.
  • Introduce the topic by asking if anyone can explain the term ZEV.
  • Once the term has been explained, take a survey to see how many students would seriously consider buying one of these vehicles if they had the opportunity.
  • Explain that this market is growing and ask the students to speculate on the reasons for this.
  • Indicate to them that Quebec has taken the bold step of announcing that it is going to ban the sale of gas-powered passenger vehicles in 2035.
  • Direct them to the article and have them read it.
  • Once they have read it, indicate that the triads, once convened, are to research and answer the following questions:
    • What percentage of the market do these vehicles currently have?
    • To what degree do these vehicles reduce pollution levels?
    • What initiatives can you find that support the development of these vehicles?
    • What impact will conversion to these vehicles have on our economy?
  • Establish a time by which the triads must have completed their work.
  • Convene the triads either in person or by means of breakout rooms online and have them discuss what they have read and begin their research.

Consolidation of Learning

  • The triads should prepare a report for submission that answers the assigned questions.
Success and Additional Learning

Success Criteria

  • The students will appreciate the benefits of utilizing ZEVs compared to gas-powered vehicles;
  • The students will understand the economic and environmental impacts of moving to the use of ZEVs.

Confirming Activities

  • Have students calculate the cost of operating one of these vehicles for a year and compare that to the cost of operating a gas-powered vehicle under the same conditions.

Helpful Internet Searches

Activities to do together

  • Visit online auto dealerships and examine the various ZEVs currently on the market.