Action taken against supplier for breach of fuel standards

30 September 2019

(Issued by Department of the Environment and Energy)

The Department of the Environment and Energy has accepted an enforceable undertaking from a fuel supplier for supplying diesel that did not comply with the Fuel Quality Standards Act 2000 (the Act).

An enforceable undertaking is a legally binding agreement between the Department and the company who proposed it and is an alternative to prosecution through the courts which aims to improve fuel quality for motorists.

In February 2019, the Department undertook fuel quality inspections at a number of the fuel supplier’s sites. Laboratory testing of the diesel samples revealed the flash point parameter did not meet the requirements of the Fuel Standard (Automotive Diesel) Determination 2001, which stipulates that diesel must have a flash point of 61.5C or above.

The enforceable undertaking will improve compliance with the fuel supplier’s obligations under the Act by conducting its own fuel sampling activities across its national supply chain over a 12 month period, and reporting the results to the Department. In addition, the fuel supplier will conduct audits and provide education to contracted fuel carriers to minimise any potential contamination which may affect fuel quality.

Supplying fuel that does not comply with the Fuel Standard (Automotive Diesel) Determination 2001 is an offence under section 12 and a contravention of section 12AA of the Act.

The maximum penalty for an offence under section 12 is 500 penalty units, and a contravention of section 12AA is 2,500 penalty units ($210/unit at the time of the alleged offence).