03 August 2007

NZ polishes its clean green image by introducing biofuel

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New Zealand motorists can now fill up their cars with biofuel as Gull is now selling 98 octane bioethanol-blended petrol in its Auckland service stations.

>According to Gull, the new fuel will cut emissions by eight per cent, it will give many modern cars more engine power and it will clean and protect the fuel system.

The new fuel is made up of ten per cent ethanol and 90 per cent petrol. The ethanol is made from whey and Gull teamed up with dairy giant Fonterra to produce New Zealand's first commercially-available biofuel.

Fonterra Chairman Henry van der Heyden said: "This means we can use the by-product of whey here on the domestic market, which is important."

Gull's general manager Dave Bodger says it is great they can work with New Zealand's dairy farmers to make New Zealand greener.

Prime minister Helen Clark took some credit for the development. The New Zealand government has brought in regulations requiring every oil company in the country start to providing biofuel to its customers from April 2008, building up to over three per cent in the next four years.

Ms Clark said: "It needed a mandatory obligation to really get this going. Unless you force the issue people keep selling the things they have always sold".

Wayne Ferrell, Gull chief executive officer said: "This is a great day and a very rare opportunity for any company in the fuel industry to launch a new product and we are really proud".

The new fuel will be rolled out to the rest of Gull's stations in the North Island within the next 12 months.

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