Minister eases motorists' worries over leaded petrol ban

Concern among owners of classic cars and other older vehicles about the impact of the forthcoming EC ban on leaded petrol was aired in the House of Lords on 12 May. But the Government is confident that replacements for leaded fuel suitable for cars which cannot be converted to run on unleaded will shortly be on the market.

EC Environment Ministers agreed last summer that retail sales of leaded petrol should end on 1 January 2000. The ban - part of the "Auto/Oil" package of controls on vehicle fuels and emissions - will not affect sales of leaded fuel through "special interest groups", though these must not exceed 0.5% of total petrol sales.

On 12 May, Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, President of the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs, told the Lords tha

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