On Thursday, 7th June I travelled to Merseyside, in my first ministerial visit outside London as Transport Minister, to promote the use of environmentally friendly fuel.
I went to a large industrial plant called Argent Energy at Ellesmere Port. This award-winning company produces bio-diesel from waste products.
Biofuels are produced from biomass: any matter derived from plants or animals such as wood, charcoal or animal waste. Government statistics have shown that the use of biofuels over petrol and diesel can reduce our fossil fuels by more than 70%.
To help promote the use of this environmentally-friendly alternative, I also launched the Government’s new labelling system for petrol and diesel pumps. This labelling system will show pumps contain environmentally-friendly fuel labelled with either ‘E5’ or ‘B7’ representing petrol that has 5% renewable ethanol or diesel with 7% biodiesel. I checked out these new labels at a Shell fuelling station in Ellesmere Port which was one of the first petrol stations to fix the new labels- they will all be at all petrol stations by September.
My third visit of the day was to Liverpool to learn more about the Arriva bus company’s environmentally-friendly buses. They have some impressive electric buses which are also very popular with customers.
Promoting the use of environmentally-friendly alternatives for travelling from place to place, whether it be by encouraging cycling and walking or by supporting the use of alternative fuels in vehicles, will be a priority for me in my role as Transport Minister.