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Fuel supplier convicted for breaches of Fuel Act

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts

MEDIA RELEASE
10 March 2009

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The Australian Government has welcomed the conviction of a petroleum supplier for nine breaches of the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000.

This is the first conviction in New South Wales for breaching the Act.

The supplier, Prime Fuel Distributors, trading as Speedway Mt Pritchard and Speedway Meadows was fined $121,000 for breaching the nation’s stringent fuel quality standards.

The Fuel Quality Standards Act protects the environment and Australians’ vehicles.

Under the Act, the permissible level of ethanol in petrol is 10 per cent and all petrol pumps dispensing ethanol blend petrol must clearly display the percentage of ethanol in the fuel. This gives consumers the information they need to make informed decisions about the suitability of the fuel they are purchasing for their vehicle.

The company in question supplied ethanol blend petrol without the required labelling and also supplied automotive diesel that exceeded maximum permissible levels of sulphur.

Australia’s fuel quality standards are designed to make the nation’s transport fuels among the cleanest in the world. The standards regulate the quality of the fuel supplied to consumers and reduce toxic vehicle emissions.

Fuel quality standards are an increasingly important issue not only to protect the environment, but to safeguard the consumer as well. Modern vehicles require fuels that meet high quality standards and can be damaged by inferior products.

This conviction is a reminder that distributing unlabelled ethanol blends and sub-standard fuel is illegal and may result in prosecution.

The Australian Government runs a national fuel sampling program to monitor the quality of fuel sold in Australia. Fuels are sampled throughout the supply chain, including at service stations. Suppliers of non-compliant fuel may be prosecuted and/or required by Federal Court injunction to stop selling non-compliant fuel.

For information on the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000 please visit:
www.environment.gov.au/atmosphere/fuelquality/standards/act/index.html