Ready for E10? Ethanol fuel awareness campaign to be launched

With E10 fuel ready for use this summer in the UK, the Department of Transport is launching an awareness campaign to check motorcyclists are aware of risks.

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BE prepared for the Department of Transport to appear on your screens and over the air on radio mid-June, with a message of awareness ahead of the introduction of E10 ethanol-blend fuel.

In anticipation of the E10 90% petrol / 10% ethanol blend fuel becoming available in UK forecourts in September, the DoT awareness campaign will appear on fuel pumps and on digital advertising in the next few weeks. 

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First reported by BMF, the campaign will ensure riders & drivers are aware of what fuel their vehicle will allow, and that the sugar-derived alcohol doesn’t find its way into the wrong tanks with an estimated 750,000 bikes that could be affected - mostly being older motorcycles.

Switching to a heavier ethanol mix (or increasing it by 5% to 10%) is hoped to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 750,000 tonnes per year - equivalent to about 350,000 cars being taken off the road.

Transport Minister Rachel Maclean MP has said:

“The rollout of E10 is the latest in a string of measures we’re taking to cut road emissions, reduce pollution and keep us on track to meet our ambitious net zero by 2050 target. 

This campaign will not only make drivers aware of the changes we’re making, but will also show millions of motorists how E10 introduction plays a part in helping reduce carbon emissions and build back greener with every tank of petrol.” 

Is E10 fuel safe to use?

Ethanol detractors fear not, E10 doesn’t quite yet spell the end of E5 fuels. 95RON will still be sold for some time to come, but it just may become the more expensive ‘Super’ option on the forecourt. 

Although ethanol is widely regarded as being detrimental to a number of vital components in the running of a motorcycle - such as fiberglass, hoses & seals, and reported to be the cause of many cracked & corroded pipes - a vast majority of motorcycles ‘born’ after 2000 were designed with ethanol-based fuels in mind. 

MPG figures could take a tumble, as ethanol isn’t quite as efficient as a fuel when compared to petrol - with a 34% lower energy per unit volume ratio.

If you want to know more about ethanol-blended fuel, there’s a great article all about it on the BMF site.

We have also pondered the future of alternative fuels here at Visordown, worth a read as well.