News story

New labelling requirements to help motorists pick the right fuel at home and abroad

New rules will help motorists identify the right fuel and tell them the biofuel content of petrol and diesel.

This was published under the 2016 to 2019 May Conservative government

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Fuel pump
  • all filling stations to roll out new labels by September 2019
  • labels will help motorists pick the right fuel, whilst informing them of the biofuel content of both petrol and diesel
  • uniform EU-wide labels will prevent drivers from filling up with the wrong fuel abroad

Drivers are set to benefit from new labels to help them to easily identify the right fuel for their vehicle, thanks to new rules being rolled out by the Department for Transport.

The labels, which will be accompanied by a wider public information campaign later this year, will also help drivers understand the biofuel content of the fuels they use every day.

Last year, the carbon dioxide (CO2) savings from using biofuels in road transport was equivalent to taking over a million cars off the UK’s roads.

Blending biofuels into regular petrol and diesel reduces CO2 emissions, helping us to meet climate change commitments. Petrol, which contains up to 5% renewable ethanol, will be labelled ‘E5’, while diesel, which contains up to 7% biodiesel, will be labelled as ‘B7’.

A DfT spokesperson said:

These new labels will help drivers chose the right fuel for their vehicle, whilst also highlighting the use of biofuels in reducing the CO2 emissions from everyday road vehicles.

Our Road to Zero strategy set out our ambition to end the sale of diesel and petrol cars by 2040, while the ongoing decarbonising of traditional fuels will help during this transition.

The labels will appear on the pumps on every forecourt and on the filler caps of all new vehicles, allowing motorists to easily match the correct fuel to their car or motorbike.

These labels will be increasingly important as new fuels come onto the market. In 2018 we issued a call for evidence on whether and how best to introduce E10, a petrol grade with up to 10% renewable ethanol. We plan to issue our response to this later in 2019.

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Published 27 February 2019