E10 fuel warning for drivers at Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury's, Asda pumps

An E10 fuel warning has been issued to Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury's and Asda drivers - with the need for "major fuel changes" highlighted by experts this week. Simon Sutcliffe, a customs and excise Partner at leading audit, tax and advisory firm Blick Rothenberg, called on the Government to address issues with fuel and "tax them accordingly".

He said: "It has gone some way to addressing this issue with the Renewable Fuel Transport Obligation (RFTO) which obligates suppliers to ensure that a certain percentage of their fuel comes from renewable and sustainable sources.

"The suppliers then redeem certificates showing their compliance. However, they can also ‘buy out’ of their obligation. Therein lies the first issue." The Department for Transport reported the switch from E5 to E10 has enabled "greater quantities of bioethanol to be used in transport".

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The report added: "The increased proportion of bioethanol is likely to be driven by the introduction of E10 in late 2021, a biofuel made up of at least 90 per cent regular unleaded and up to 10 per cent ethanol." Mr Sutcliffe said: "A rationalisation of the projects (and acronyms) and a commitment to support a particular direction would be useful for the automotive industry.”

E10 is a biofuel made up of 90% regular unleaded and 10% ethanol – hence the E10 name. Standard unleaded fuel contains up to 5% ethanol and can be used in any petrol-engined car without problems or the need for modification.

As a rule, drivers of cars registered prior to 2002 are advised not to use E10 in their vehicle, as problems have been reported. And as of 2011, all new cars sold in the UK must be E10 compatible. E10 is less efficient than the current E5 blend of fuel, with the problem exacerbated in smaller-engined cars, the RAC warned.