By the end of the year you could well be pouring E10 fuel into your car and maybe have no other choice or not even know it.

At present we in the UK are using E5 fuel, that is 95 percent petrol and five percent bio-ethanol. The change to E10, which as you may well have guessed contains 90 percent petrol and ten percent bio-ethanol, is meant to be a green move. But tests show that mpg decreases and CO2 emissions increase when using E10 compared to E5 fuel or 100 percent petrol.

The tests by What Car? showed drops in efficiency on a range of cars of about ten percent. But it was the smaller cars that appear to be most affected, you know the ones that the less well off buy.

The introduction of this fuel can be sourced back to an EU Directive that states that 10 percent of all road transport energy must come from renewable means by 2020.

So, a European Union directive is going to be responsible for rising motoring costs and damage to the environment. The use of bio-ethanol also means diverting agricultural land away from food production into growing crops for fuel, potentially making food more expensive.

UKIP's Head of Policy Unit Tim Aker said:

"This is another example of barmy green madness.

"This inefficient EU-favoured petrol will cut motorists miles to the gallon in the name of the bonkers green agenda.

Traffic by mattbuck

Traffic by mattbuck

"It demonstrates how the EU can't even properly pursue its own goals, obstructed by the harsh reality of basic science and economics, of which they seem to know little about.

"The EU should keep its nose out of UK motorists' business. British motorists do not need to be lectured by inadequately briefed foreign bureaucrats about how they must pay more to drive. In fact Britain needs to seriously look at bringing down the cost of petrol instead of putting it up."

Talking to CityAM David Bizley, technical director at roadside assistance service RAC, said:

"The European Directive is clearly well-intentioned, but it is both surprising and worrying that [tests showed] that carbon dioxide emissions actually increased and fuel economy fell by as much as 10 per cent on vehicles using E10.

"If motorists are required to use a less efficient fuel then government should be considering reducing the fuel duty on E10 to offset any reduction in fuel economy."

The editor-in-chief of What Car? Chas Hallett, wants comprehensive UK based research conducted on the new fuel so that drivers know what they are getting and how it will affect them.

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