bunkered fuel pump

Consumption of transport fuels fell slightly in the third quarter of 2012, new figures from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) show.

The data reveals that a 5.6% fall in petrol deliveries during the quarter were largely offset by a 3.4% rise in diesel deliveries.

In all, just over 4.5 billion litres of petrol (Q3 2011: 4.77 billion litres) and 6.52 billion litres of diesel (Q3 2011: 6.3 billion) were delivered during the quarter.

Of the diesel, some 4.2 billion litres went to retail outlets (up 0.9% on Q3 2011) while around 2.2 billion litres were accounted for by bulk deliveries (up 8.5%).

In November, the average UK retail price for petrol was ranked fifth highest in the EU at 134.5ppl; while average UK retail diesel prices were the very highest in the EU at 141.1ppl. Of this, 58% of the diesel price is accounted for by tax.

FairFuelUK founder Peter Carroll said the figures were no surprise but stressed that it remained a serious disadvantage to UK truck operators for the nation to be  at the top of “the one league table we don’t want to be winning”.

Carroll added that despite the Chancellor’s welcome decision to scrap the planned January increase in fuel duty, the fight to get a fairer deal would continue.

“It’s a game of two halves”, said Carroll. “The first half is about stopping more pain being piled on in fuel duty, which we seem to have had some considerable success with; the second half, which is more important, is to finally win the argument that a cut in fuel duty would be largely self-financing and be a vital stimulus to growth.”