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Ban on red diesel will hit charity events, says Allister


TUV leader Jim Allister MLA

TUV leader Jim Allister MLA

TUV leader Jim Allister MLA

The red diesel fuel ban will hit charity events, ploughing matches and pleasure cruising, an MLA has warned.

From April, Government plans mean red diesel will only be allowed for use in agriculture, rail transport and non-commercial heating.

Construction and manufacturing sectors have warned it could cost them up to £25m a year because heavy equipment such as mobile generators will no longer be able to be run on red diesel.

But MLA Jim Allister has warned it will have a wider impact than feared.

“If a farmer, for example, wanted to oblige a neighbour by taking his digger to dig out something, he would be regarded as a contractor and would have to wash out the tank and fill it with white diesel,” the TUV leader said.

“That is so impractical that it is just not going to happen. Even charity tractor runs and ploughing matches and so on will be blighted because they are not strictly farming.”

Mr Allister also added: “From June there will be an insistence that those who have pleasure crafts use white diesel to propel them, an imposition being inflicted on us because we are still bound by a European court judgment and because of the protocol.”

The Government proposals designed to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality would end the lower tax rate imposed on red diesel, which is white diesel which has been dyed.

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