E10 fuel changes: Retailers say claims new fuel caused shortages were ‘widely exaggerated’

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The PRA has backtracked on their comments last week after they said E10 petrol could have had an “unintended consequence”. They previously said E5 retailers had been emptying E5 “as fast as [they] could” to get ready for E10 which had caused members to run out “pretty quickly”.

However, the PRA said the claims E10 had any impact on the crisis had been “widely exaggerated”.

Brian Madderson, Chairman of the PRA said fuel retailers had been “advised” to run down stocks but could still stock E5 as the standard grade until next month.

He said: “Claims made today stating that the Governments switch to greener E10 petrol last month is a ‘major factor’ behind the fuel crisis have been widely exaggerated.

“The PRA has simply shared guidance and good advice from the Energy Institute and advised members to run down standard grade E5 stocks down from August onwards in order to comply with the law as early as possible.

“Under current legislation, fuel retailers are still allowed to use standard E5 stocks until November 1, 2021, as part of a gradual change”.

Experts at Nottingham University said they did “suspect” the recent move to E10 fuel could have had an effect.

They said forecourts may have been operating with “lower stocks of fuel” as they prepared for the switch.

The Department for Transport also confirmed there was “no evidence” the shortage was directly a result of E10 fuel.

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They said the crisis was instead caused by “atypical consumer behaviour” as panic buying swept the nation.

The DfT said they were working closely with the industry to help increase fuel sticks.

They said there were signs of improvement in sticks across the UK as demand continues to stabilize.

The DfT said several measures had been taken to solve the situation, including using the military to drive tankers to forecourts.

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