The first of three Tim Hortons quick service restaurant locations in Canada have added TurnOnGreen's Level 3 electric vehicle (EV) chargers.
COVID-19 pandemic-related supply chain issues and restricted access to Canada delayed the pilot program, according to a statement from BitNile Holdings, Inc., the parent company of TurnOnGreen, known for its a green energy technology and power electronics. Since resuming in February 2022, significant milestones have been reached.
In December 2020, a green energy technology and power electronics subsidiary entered into an agreement with select franchisees to install Level 3 EV chargers at select Tim Hortons locations as part of a revenue-sharing program. Since the resumption of work, TurnOnGreen, with its Canadian partner, has completed site planning, permitting and provisioning the required power infrastructure to support the installation of two FSP1200, 120 kW DC Fast Chargers at the first pilot location. Installation is expected to be completed during Q2.
Here in the US, Starbucks is also making a move into EV charging. According to MotorTrend, Volvo plans to install up to 60 Volvo-branded DC fast chargers powered by ChargePoint in at least 15 Starbucks locations. The charging network will cover a 1,350-mile route from the Denver area to Starbucks headquarters in Seattle.
Tim Hortons has piloted EV charging stations in the past. Back in 2013, the QSR added electric charging stations in Ontario and British Columbia. After a test at the Oakville, Ontario location, the pilot was expanded. Supported by the Province of BC's Community Charging Infrastructure Fund and Koben Systems Inc., the program placed six additional charging stations strategically in Nanaimo, Langford, North Vancouver, Burnaby, Abbotsford and Coquitlam to create paths within the province, allowing guests to travel from restaurant to restaurant strictly on electric power.
Sustainability for the Planet
Tim Horton's EV charging pilot comes as electric vehicle adoption is gaining steam, and as gasoline prices skyrocket to all-time highs. The move to add EV chargers coincides with the rise of broader sustainability concerns in the restaurant industry.
At MURTEC, Wade Allen, Senior VP, Head of Innovation, Brinker International shared that Brinker is looking into solar capabilities, with strategically-placed AC/HVAC to make room for solar panels on the roof, or even covering parking areas with solar. “We are becoming more conscious of what’s happening in the restaurants in this area.” Allen said.
Sustainability will continue to influence how restaurants make decisions in 2022, according to the National Restaurant Association’s annual What’s Hot Culinary Forecast. For Taco Bell, sustainability is on its list of "guiding philosophies" for 2022.
Chipotle aims to reduce its carbon emissions 50% by 2030. Also leading the charge is Panera Bread, which has a goal to become climate positive by 2050. Starbucks and McDonald's have cut their use of "problematic plastic" by 57% between 2018 and 2020. Recently, fast-casual brand Noodles shared what it is doing to further its sustainability commitment.