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Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.

Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Ethanol blend labelling requirements

What is the authority?

The Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Determination 2003 (the ethanol labelling standard) as amended by the Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Amendment Determination 2005 (No.1) sets requirements for labelling petrol containing ethanol. The requirements are made under the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000 (the Act).

What fuel needs to be labelled?

The ethanol labelling standard applies to all ethanol blends. An ethanol blend is petrol containing more than 1% ethanol. The fuel quality standard for petrol limits the amount of ethanol in petrol to 10%.

What do I need to do?

If you supply an ethanol blend for retail sale from a service station you are required to advise consumers that the fuel supplied contains ethanol. You will need to display this advice on every fuel pump dispensing ethanol blended petrol. There are separate requirements for ethanol blend petrol supplied by retail sale other than from a service station.

When did this requirement start?

The labelling requirement began 1 March 2004 and was amended in January 2006.

How will I know if the petrol I sell is subject to labelling requirements?

If you supply ethanol blends to consumers, you are responsible for labelling your fuel pumps.

When you receive ethanol blended fuel supplies from your fuel distributor, you should also receive documentation from them stating that the fuel contains a certain percentage of ethanol and that the fuel is subject to the ethanol labelling standard.

If you receive fuel which you know contains ethanol and there is no ethanol statement on your delivery documents please contact us at fuel.quality@environment.gov.au or 1800 803 772.

What are the new labelling requirements?

All pumps dispensing ethanol blend petrol must clearly display the words 'Contains up to x% ethanol' (where x is no less than the percentage of ethanol in the petrol) or 'Contains y% ethanol' (where y is the percentage of ethanol in the petrol).

Where must the labelling information be displayed?

For ethanol blends supplied from a pump at service stations, it is necessary to clearly display information on the petrol pump.

There are also requirements for retail supply of ethanol blends dispensed other than from a petrol pump. These are set out in the Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Amendment Determination 2005 (No.1).

What are the penalties for failing to meet the labelling requirements?

Failure to comply with the labelling requirements when supplying an ethanol blend is an offence under the Act and carries a fine of up to $6,600 for an individual and $33,000 for a body corporate.

How are breaches of the standard detected?

The Australian Government runs a monitoring program under the Act. Fuel quality inspectors conduct sampling at all points of the supply chain including refineries, importers, distributors and service stations.

Inspectors will check for ethanol labelling during their inspection.

Complaints about ethanol labelling are also received from the public. These complaints are investigated and prosecution action may be taken.

Where can I get more information?

For a complete understanding of your obligations you should read the ethanol labelling standard and, if necessary, obtain legal advice.

If you have any questions about ethanol blend labelling requirements please contact us at fuel.quality@environment.gov.au or 1800 803 772.

Disclaimer

The information contained on this page is of a general nature only and should be read in conjunction with the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000, Fuel Quality Standards Regulations 2001, Fuel Quality Information Standard (Ethanol) Determination 2003, and the Fuel Standard (Petrol) Determination 2001. Fuel suppliers may wish to seek legal advice about their obligations under this legislation.