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City explores electric aircraft charging station proposal

A Campbell River flight training school wants to partner with the city on an electric aircraft charging station.

Mike Andrews with Sealand Flight Limited says the Campbell River Airport is the perfect location for the emerging fuel option.

“The airport’s frequent Vancouver flights are perfect for regional electric aircraft implementation. Sealand Aviation will be an established hub for electric aircraft maintenance. And lastly, with its central location, YBL is the gateway to allowing electric aircraft to reach further and further distances and communities on the west coast,” Andrews told a council committee Tuesday.

Andrews says Sealand is only the second entity in Canada to be selected by Transport Canada to investigate the technology.

“Our vision for the future of sustainable aviation has public aircraft chargers as common as fuel pumps currently are at airports across Canada. We’ve all seen this happen with electric vehicles in the last decade and now airplanes are marking their foundation as well.

He explained the current technology allows for about 50 minutes of flight time after 50 minutes of charging the aircraft.

As for a charger location, Andrews says it could be located next to any taxiway at the airport and could be managed by Sealand, similar to the aircraft fuel its managing now.

The school has two portable electric chargers but would like a full-fledged charging station at YBL.

Many city councillors, including Doug Chapman, Ron Kerr and Susan Sinnott, expressed excitement about the proposal.

The idea has been sent to city staff for a report on processes and available funding opportunities to put a charger at the airport.

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