28 Feb 2003

Regulations to control emissions and fuel implications

Air quality and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are of continuing concern in the European Union. More recently, the EU Commission has raised security of energy supply as a further concern. Major progress has been made on air quality improvement and emissions will continue to decrease as a result of the Directives arising from the European Auto-Oil Programmes.

The full benefits of these measures will be realised as vehicle fleets are turned over to newer, cleaner technologies. Fuel quality improvements are contributing to the solutions, mainly through the concept of “enabling quality”, where improved fuels lead to a step change in emissions by enabling the introduction of significant new engine or exhaust after-treatment technologies. Notably, sulphur-free fuels (10 ppm S max) will be gradually introduced into the European market during the course of this decade, enabling further steps in emissions control to be achieved.

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