To help solve electric vehicle adoption challenges, Hon. Seamus O'Regan, Canada’s minister of natural resources, on Tuesday announced a $1 million investment in SWTCH.

That company will demonstrate a blockchain-based EV charging platform that it says will significantly reduce the cost of EV charging transactions and enhance grid efficiency.

SWTCH will work with project partners Opus One Solutions, Toronto Hydro, University of Waterloo, University of Toronto, IBI Group and PowerCharge, in contributing to the project.

The total project cost is more than $2.6 million.

According to a news release from Natural Resources Canada, the Canadian government is committed to building a clean energy future to strengthen the economy. It also seeks to create strong, middle-class jobs and support the natural resource sectors.

That commitment is important as Canada reopens its economy and plans its recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Natural Resources Canada.

The transportation sector accounts for 25% of Canada's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, according to the release. The increased adoption of EVs is important to decarbonizing Canada’s transportation sector and moving to a low-carbon future.

“By demonstrating an efficient and scalable blockchain-based platform that can record transactions to reduce transactional costs and reduce network congestion, the platform offers a unique option to EV drivers, charging service providers and utilities that would contribute to an increased uptake of EVs,” Natural Resources Canada said.

Federal funding for this project was provided through Natural Resources Canada's Green Infrastructure – Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Demonstration program. That program seeks to accelerate the market entry of next-generation clean energy technologies.

The government is committed to encouraging innovation with hopes for widespread EV adoption, according to Natural Resources Canada.

Natural Resources Canada said it would continue supporting energy initiatives to reduce pollution, create healthier communities and provide economic development opportunities.

“As electric vehicle adoption grows and our energy systems become increasingly decentralized, our blockchain-based solution is poised to deliver the greatest value to all stakeholders involved in integrating EVs into the distributed energy ecosystem,” said SWTCH chief executive officer Carter Li.

Hari Subramaniam, chief of strategic growth for Opus One Solutions, added, “We are thrilled to partner with another Canadian clean tech company to expand our transaction energy platform into the world of electric vehicles and to enable decarbonization in the transportation industry.”