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No. 162/10 | Berlin, 24.10.2010

Röttgen and Meyer: increased bioethanol share in petrol

From January new type of petrol at filling stations / bioethanol share in petrol will increase to 10 percent / Cabinet to adopt new ordinance on Wednesday

From January 2011, petrol with a bioethanol share of up to 10 percent will be available at German filling stations in addition to the current types of petrol. On Wednesday, 27 October 2010 the Federal Cabinet will adopt a corresponding ordinance, thus implementing the European Fuel Quality Directive. Federal Environment Minister Norbert Röttgen and ADAC President Peter Meyer have made the following statement: "Effective climate protection is only possible if action is taken in all areas of everyday life. This applies to fuels too. The EU has therefore decided to increase the share of biofuels in the transport sector. This will now be implemented in Germany. With the increase in biofuel from plants we aim to lower CO2 in exhaust gases and thus conserve increasingly scarce crude oil reserves."

Minister Röttgen and Mr Meyer highlighted that the biofuels currently in use produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions than conventional fuels, and that use of biofuels reduces dependence on increasingly scarce crude oil. They also pointed out that crude oil has to be imported, whereas the majority of raw materials required for bioethanol grow in Germany or Europe. Biofuel is obtained from plants cultivated in a sustainable way, in compliance with legal provisions. Sustainable cultivation means that cultivation of the raw materials must not be to the detriment of man or nature, for example not in areas eligible for protection or areas with a high level of biological diversity.

Following the increase last year in blending biodiesel with diesel fuel, the bioethanol share in petrol will now be raised, as required under the European Fuel Quality Directive. From the beginning of 2011, petrol with a bioethanol share of up to 10 percent will be available at German filling stations in addition to the current types of petrol. These new fuels will be labelled E10. "E" stands for ethanol, the number 10 for 10 percent. Up to now, the ethanol share in petrol has been up to 5 percent. The introduction of E10 will be regulated by an ordinance to be adopted by the Federal Cabinet on Wednesday; after that, the Länder will be consulted via the Bundesrat. The whole process is expected to be concluded by mid-December.

The new petrol will be clearly labelled at fuel pumps with the name of the type of petrol supplemented with "E10" - for example "Super E10".

Around 90 percent of all petrol-powered passenger cars can use E10 without any restrictions. Generally speaking, new cars are compatible with E10. Drivers of petrol-powered cars should make sure that their vehicle is compatible with E10 before purchasing E10 fuel for the first time. Vehicle manufacturers can inform car owners whether their vehicle is compatible. A list of cars compatible with E10 will be available from mid-November on the website of the Deutsche Automobil Treuhand GmbH at www.dat.de/e10 (in German only) . Car salesrooms and garages can also provide information about the E10 compatibility of vehicles. The E10 compatibility list also contains service numbers of manufacturers that can be contacted with queries. Further information on E10 is available from the ADAC and the Federal Environment Ministry at www.adac.de/e10 (in German only) and www.bmub.bund.de/e10 (in German only). All cars not proven to be compatible with E10 should be fuelled with the existing petrol types only. Fuel providers are obliged to supply these other types of petrol in future too.

Minister Röttgen and Mr Meyer: "We expect the introduction of E10 to be structured in a consumer-friendly way. It must therefore be open and transparent, must not be used for a general increase in petrol prices or have detrimental effects for drivers dependent on existing fuel types."

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