Tories reject Brussels ban on leaded fuel

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The Independent Online
A European Commission proposal to ban leaded petrol from the end of 1999 is to be opposed by the Government.

The Commission strategy for reducing emissions from cars from 2000 was discussed by environment ministers last month, and agreement is expected in June. But the transport minister, John Bowis, has told MPs it is "unnecessary and inefficient to impose a ban on leaded petrol as proposed". While the aim of reducing leaded petrol sales was "laudable", Mr Bowis said in a memorandum for the Commons European Legislation Committee that the British had over the past seven years used preferential taxation to promote leadless petrol sales. That had contributed to a reduction in airborne lead of over 70 per cent. Anthony Bevins