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Phasing out unleaded petrol

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Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby rogf24 » Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:01 pm

There are 2 threads on petrol at the moment so I think this article which suggests that regular unleaded petrol will be phased out soon will be of interest to you. Premium unleaded will still be sold.

Regular unleaded petrol - the most popular fuel choice among Australian motorists - would be completely phased out under a series of radical proposals by the Turnbull government.

Banning regular unleaded petrol would dramatically improve the quality of Australian fuel, rated the dirtiest in the developed world, but would likely lead to substantial price hikes for motorists.

From tracing the exact source of CO2 in our atmosphere to measuring the earth's "carbon budget", the scientists studying climate change know a lot more about the greenhouse effect than you might think.
Premium unleaded petrol costs an average of 10.7 cents more per litre than regular unleaded, which has been the standard fuel for Australian vehicles since leaded petrol was phased out by the Howard government.

The operators of Australia's four remaining oil refineries - two in Victoria, one in Queensland and one in Western Australia - would also be forced to rebuild their plants, with costs potentially running into the billions.

A government discussion paper quietly released on Tuesday afternoon argues that reducing the amount of sulfur in the petrol sold in Australia would produce strong environmental and health impacts. Australia has the lowest quality petrol of the 35 countries in the OECD, below Mexico, Turkey and Estonia.

The paper proposes five options (more like four), including:

Phasing out regular unleaded petrol over two to five years, with sulfur in premium unleaded and ethanol blends limited to 10 parts per million (down from 50ppm);
Bringing Australian standards into line with Europe, with a 10 ppm sulfur limit for all fuels including regular unleaded (down from 150ppm);
Limiting sulfur in regular unleaded petrol limited to 50ppm from 2020 and 25ppm for premium unleaded;
and Business as usual

NRMA spokesman Peter Khoury said the association supported improving Australian fuel standards but was growing "increasingly concerned" about the ideas suggested by the government.

"If you go down the path of phasing out regular unleaded you would be exposing motorists to even more rorts than we are now," he said.

"Premium unleaded already costs 21 cents more than ethanol - imagine what could happen if we adopt European standards."

The Australian Automobile Association said in a submission to government that reducing the availability of regular unleaded petrol would have "significant cost implications for the vast majority of motorists".

"This would be particularly bad for those that drive older vehicles, who would be forced to pay a higher price for fuel, without any emissions benefits being realised."

Regular unleaded petrol is used by around 80 per cent of motorists in the states and territories outside NSW. In NSW, which has an ethanol mandate, regular unleaded is used by around 22 per cent of motorists, premium unleaded 30 per cent, ethanol 18 per cent and diesel 30 per cent.

The paper acknowledges the the impact on "different socio-economic groups" of phasing out regular unleaded will have to be carefully analysed. It says particular attention will also have to be given to the impact on regional communities and domestic refineries.

The Australian Institute of Petroleum has warned the introduction of European standards here would threaten the viability of the refineries, three of which have already closed in the last five years.

"Given the potential impact on Australian oil refineries we're seeking a careful and thorough consideration of costs and benefits of change, particularly to refineries and Australian motorists," chief executive Paul Barrett told Fairfax Media.

The closure of the Vitol-operated refinery in Geelong would have major economic ramifications for the Victorian industrial city.

An AIP submission to the government's fuel review said the industry would need at least five years to implement any significant changes.

"If the implementation of the 10ppm sulfur petrol leads to refinery closures, it will also place a significant volume demand on the import market in Asia providing upward pressure on the price of new Australian grade fuel specifications," the submission warns.

When releasing the discussion paper on Tuesday, Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg and Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher said the proposals, open for consultation until March, were "designed to keep Australia in line with international vehicle markets and keep us enjoying some of the cleanest air in the world".

Melbourne motorist Alison Lansley said she would struggle to afford the switch to premium unleaded for the family's 16-year-old Toyota. "I guess if they mandated it, we wouldn't have much of a choice. But if it's better for the environment, that's okay," the Carlton resident said.

But Patrick O'Neill was angered by the proposal. "It would piss me off that I have to pay more for something I didn't want," the Albury father of two said. "I can afford it, but my kids can't, so that's not fair."


http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/ ... tft1v.html

Thoughts? I reckon it's a good idea but it has to be carefully implemented.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby GazzaOak » Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:08 pm

I don't see it happening..... but thank god there heaps of servos which serve the normal 91 in my neck of the woods (often with the e10 attached, which i think its fair)

That will pee off too many people if they want to get rid of 91 or reduce the flow of 91, including myself (and i don't live in rural lands). E10 should be an optional fuel for people that wanna save the earth haha
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby rogf24 » Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:16 pm

E10 save the planet? I don't think so, the carbon emission savings from E10 are minimal. Even the Greens agree.

https://nsw.greens.org.au/news/nsw/nsw- ... ts-profits

BTW, the Greens press release does a pretty good job at explaining the different petrol and ethanol types and other stuff. It's also interesting that the Greens teamed up with petrol sellers for that press release.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby GazzaOak » Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:24 pm

rogf24 wrote:E10 save the planet? I don't think so, the carbon emission savings from E10 are minimal. Even the Greens agree.

https://nsw.greens.org.au/news/nsw/nsw- ... ts-profits

BTW, the Greens press release does a pretty good job at explaining the different petrol and ethanol types and other stuff. It's also interesting that the Greens teamed up with petrol retailers for that press release.


That why E10 is a joke..... its should be optional, but i laugh at people. If you really want to save the earth, sell your car and stop driving haha.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby simonl » Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:35 pm

rogf24 wrote:E10 save the planet? I don't think so, the carbon emission savings from E10 are minimal. Even the Greens agree.

https://nsw.greens.org.au/news/nsw/nsw- ... ts-profits

BTW, the Greens press release does a pretty good job at explaining the different petrol and ethanol types and other stuff. It's also interesting that the Greens teamed up with petrol sellers for that press release.

Well, about 10% over the life of the fuel. A bit less after farming losses. Ethanol is a renewable fuel made from stuff which is grown via photosynthesis. The Greens would say that because they find reasons to be against even policies which support the green cause. Reducing the sulphur (to the degree it is used to increase octane rating) and adding ethanol would be very beneficial for the environment.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby rogf24 » Wed Dec 21, 2016 9:45 pm

I agree with reducing the sulfur but E10 is of very limited value when it comes to the climate although, yes, it is renewable. But that doesn't mean that every form of renewable is a good idea. You're looking at very minimal reductions in carbon emissions with E10 once you account for farming losses, processing and the lower energy density (in the mixture). And besides, it takes away a potential source of food away from people who don't have much to eat.

E85 is a different story (at least when it comes to the environment if not food access) but E10 is a joke when it comes to the climate, not worth it. Having said that, it is good for farmers and also helps reduce our dependency on oil from the unstable Middle-East by a bit, E10 (91+Ethanol) could be kept as an alternative to regular unleaded. That way the only pure unleaded you can get is through premium but you have to pay for it, a scenario the article hints at.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby simonl » Thu Dec 22, 2016 9:53 am

http://biofuelsassociation.com.au/biofu ... emissions/

In Australia in 2014, our gasoline demand equaled 18,000,000,000 litres of fuel. According to the Australia’s National Greenhouse Accounts (NGA) 2.33kg of CO2 is emitted for every litre combusted in an engine. So in terms of Australia’s 2014 consumption of petrol, we emitted 41,306,76,000kgs or 41.3 million tonnes of CO2.

The use of ethanol blended fuels is another vital tool in our fight against climate change and global warming. Ethanol blended fuels can significantly reduce our greenhouse gas emissions over their entire lifecycle, from production through to use in the vehicle.

The NGA also states that one litre of ethanol reduces net emissions of CO2 by over 99%, so one litre of ethanol will save approximately 2.3kg of CO2.

I would hardly say "very minimal".
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby Frosty » Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:31 pm

No mention of Diesel fuel though that stuff isn't much better Europe is starting to move away from Diesel. If you're looking at buying or replacing a car it would be interesting buy a diesel, buy a regular unleaded but soon have to use premium therefore costing more or electric. Electric is probably viable if you have a garage to charge and don't drive far i.e. Inner City driving.

I support regular unleaded it being phased out but surely premium unleaded must not be even price gauged even more. I have feeling once regular unleaded is gone they will jack up the prices of premium by 10 cents a litre at least. Then people will flurry and buy diesel which have a higher nitrogen oxide Nox levels as proven in Europe.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby boronia » Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:52 pm

Never mind that ethanol is not good for a lot of cars. It goes off after a few days, you don't know how long it has been in the tank when you buy it.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby simonl » Thu Dec 22, 2016 8:50 pm

I think you meant months. It attracts water which is bad for the petrol part of the mixture.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby boronia » Thu Dec 22, 2016 9:07 pm

No, possibly days. The ethanol separates out of the petrol if it is not constantly agitated, and absorbs the moisture quicker. Cars that don't get a lot of use are most at risk.

I think the E10 blending has moved from 91 to 95 fuel in recent times.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby simonl » Fri Dec 23, 2016 11:43 am

GazzaOak wrote:E10 should be an optional fuel for people that wanna save the earth haha

On this point, the only way we got rid of lead in fuels is by charging people more for using leaded fuels. It will be similar with sulfur and other octane enriching additives like benzene (a known carcinogen).
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby boronia » Fri Dec 23, 2016 12:09 pm

We got rid of leaded petrol about 30 years ago by legislating it off sale in service stations. Nothing to do with charging more.

Last I heard it was only available as aviation fuel, with a special permit.

E10 is an option now, not compulsory.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby simonl » Fri Dec 23, 2016 1:47 pm

boronia wrote:We got rid of leaded petrol about 30 years ago by legislating it off sale in service stations. Nothing to do with charging more.

Last I heard it was only available as aviation fuel, with a special permit.

E10 is an option now, not compulsory.

They did start the phase out with a price differential though. Don't you remember that step in the process?

They did ban it for new cars in 1986 but you could buy it for any car made before this time for about 15-20 years after that. I think the price differential came in the early 90s.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby boronia » Fri Dec 23, 2016 3:33 pm

Sorry, can't remember back that far now.

I worked for an oil company in the 70s, and was involved in planning for ULP installations. I think it started to come into supply back then, but there were problems getting LP and ULP off the refineries at the same time.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby Fleet Lists » Fri Dec 23, 2016 3:41 pm

According to https://www.environment.gov.au/node/13512
National phase out of leaded petrol

On 15 March 2000, the Australian Government announced a phase-out of leaded petrol in Australia under the National Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000. On 1 January 2002, that phase-out was completed. The sale of leaded petrol in Australia is now prohibited, except in cases specifically authorised by the Minister.
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby simonl » Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:19 pm

Ok, the differential price was introduced in 1994: http://fueltaxinquiry.treasury.gov.au/c ... nd/002.asp
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Re: Phasing out unleaded petrol

Postby Merc1107 » Sun Dec 25, 2016 4:56 pm

In the rest of the world (which is looking more and more sensible than this country each day, I might add), they have simply limited the maximum amount of sulphur found in fuels. In the USA, starting in 2017, fuel will (supposedly) contain a maximum of 10ppm of Sulphur.
There is presently a discussion ongoing on Bob Is The Oil Guy about this topic

The whole notion of "ban this, ban that" of our Governments is deeply concerning. Just restrict the level of sulphur, full stop, end of story. It provides little to no benefit for the car, engine oil or emissions control. The stuff mainly lubricates the fuel pumps in some way. With lower-sulphur fuels, car economy should be able to improve, and servicing intervals drastically increased due to cleaner burning and less fouling of the oil.

There is nothing wrong with using 91 fuel, provided your car is designed to utilise it without detonation or pinging - and on that note, a significant number of late-model vehicles I'm seeing on the road these days are making the tell-tale "clatter" of pinging. I've long maintained something is wrong with our fuels - my suspicion is they aren't as high octane as labelled on the pump.

For the record, there is no difference in the "emissions friendliness" of 91, 95 or 98. They must ALL contain the minimum-prescribed level of detergents. Some retailers might use a different formulation, but that's about the end of it. Only difference is the octane.
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