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Diesel cold flow issues


12 December 2013

UKPIA represents nine oil refining and marketing companies operating in the UK, which also own approximately 1,600 of the UK's 8,600 service stations. UKPIA members own and operate the seven crude oil processing refineries in the UK. 

UKPIA is aware of reported incidences of diesel cold flow issues, mainly in the North East. UKPIA members do not supply all of the fuel in the region and are currently assisting in the industry investigation into this complex issue. 
The parameters of investigative tests, at this stage, are all encompassing, including quality of biodiesel (FAME), base hydrocarbon fuel, how the product is blended and any other additives used. UKPIA will continue testing fuels supplied to the area - including filter blocking tendency studies - until causes are determined.  

The following points should be noted with regards to fuel quality of diesel: 

  • Diesel in the UK is required to meet BS EN 590 standard. 
  • Fuels suppliers are mandated to add biofuels to road fuels under the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO) which commenced in 2008. Under the order the quantity of biofuel to be added has increased each year and is currently 4.75% volume when averaged over all transport fuels. 
  • The biodiesel element (FAME) must meet BS EN 14214:2012 standard, which includes a modified diesel specification to address low temperature vehicle operation.
  • Additionally, UKPIA is fully participating in the British Standards Institute’s Task Group, which is also investigating the matter. 


Enquiries to: Nick Vendervell, Tel 020 7269 7604
Nunzia Florio, Tel 020 7269 7605

Notes to Editors:

  1. UKPIA represents nine oil refining and marketing companies that operate the 7 major oil refineries in the UK and source close to 90% of the transport fuels used. UKPIA members also own around 1,600 of the 8,700 filling stations in the UK.

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