E10 petrol changes praised as an ‘important step’ for greener driving

Woolwich resident says petrol prices are 'astronomical'

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The new environmentally friendly petrol was launched onto forecourts in Northern Ireland earlier this week. The rollout of E10 fuel was praised by many within the fuel industry as a way to help internal combustion engine-powered cars reduce their emissions while keeping them on the road.

The rollout of E10, which is petrol blended with up to 10 percent renewable ethanol, will help Northern Ireland to decarbonise transport, as it is greener than existing petrol.

Its use across the UK could contribute to cutting transport CO2 emissions in the UK by potentially 750,000 tonnes a year – equivalent to a forest the size of the Isle of Wight capturing carbon every year.

The move to E10 is fully supported by the downstream oil sector as a practical measure to further reduce carbon emissions.

Elizabeth de Jong, Chief Executive Officer of UKPIA, welcomed the rollout of E10 in Northern Ireland, saying it will further help to slash emissions.

She added: “UKPIA is clear that transport will need low carbon fuels if the UK is to meet its Net Zero target by 2050 and the change is an important step in the UK’s broader energy transition journey.

“Petrol and diesel engines will continue to be a large part of the vehicle fleet, as will hybrids, beyond the 2030 phase out of new combustion engine vehicle sales which are not zero emission at the tailpipe.

“E10 can reduce emissions of such vehicles and deliver greenhouse gas savings early. 

“This move will also support the development of low carbon fuels that will be required over the longer-term for aviation and heavy goods vehicles.​”

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Similarly, Gaynor Hartnell, Chief Executive of the Renewable Transport Fuel Association (RTFA) echoed the move by the Government.

She said: “Most petrol cars on the road are optimised to run on E10, and it’s very welcome that motorists in Northern Ireland will soon benefit from having access to this greener fuel”.

All fuel prices have been rising in recent weeks, despite the wholesale cost of oil generally being stable or declining slightly.

Unleaded petrol has increased by around 4p in the last month rising to its current level of 165.77p per litre, although the RAC predicts that no further change is forecast.

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Super unleaded, which for many would now be E5 petrol, costs an average of 179.7p per litre.

Many drivers have claimed that they are returning to using E5 petrol because of the benefits of fuel economy, despite the price.

In comparison, diesel prices continue to increase, breaking the 190p barrier, with the RAC forecasting that further cost increases are likely.

However, Northern Ireland generally benefits from cheaper costs thanks to the Consumer Council Fuel Price Checker which lists the average prices of petrol and diesel in most towns.

This helps promote affordability for the customer and drives competition between the forecourts to lower prices.

Armagh has the lowest average petrol prices – which will now be E10 petrol – at just 159.4p per litre, while Magherafelt averages 166.9p per litre.

On average, diesel is also around 4p cheaper in Northern Ireland than the rest of the UK.

Forecourts in Belfast are selling diesel for just 183.2p on average, with petrol stations charging as little as 179.9p per litre.

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