EghtesadOnline: Gasoline sold in big cities is compliant with Euro-4 emission standards, an official at the National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company said.
According to Fatemeh Kahi, a study recently conducted by the Iranian National Standards Organization from Sept. to Dec. 2020 on gasoline quality indicates the fuel contains acceptable levels of sulfur and other chemicals, IRNA reported.
“Not only have sulfur levels declined compared to summer, aromatic compounds, benzene, octane and olefin also are at acceptable levels.”
As part of the study, samples of gasoline compliant with Euro-4 emission standards were collected randomly from 200 gas stations and the results revealed that sulfur and aromatic hydrocarbon levels were admissible, she said.
Last July the Department of Environment found out that the quantity of hazardous elements in gasoline (aromatic compounds and benzene) was 40% and 1.4% respectively -- above levels set by the European Union (35% and 1%). Nonetheless, that decreased to 11.5% and 0.48% respectively, she noted.
Referring to other elements like sulfur (32%), octane (91.5%) and olefine (4%), Kahi said the indices comply with defined standards.
DoE is in charge of checking the quality of gasoline and INSO gets involved if and when necessary.
The National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company produces close to 100 million liters of gasoline, of which 80 million liters comply with Euro-4 standards.
Iran has improved distribution of cleaner gasoline in recent years, but wide-scale supplies of low-quality diesel and slack environmental rules are delaying efforts to effectively curb air pollution.
Lack of regulations for standard diesel is one of the main reasons behind the worsening air pollution in the metropolises.
“INSO and the DoE are planning to make emission standards mandatory for diesel, a polluting fuel that unlike gasoline does not meet European emission standards.”
In related news, IRNA said that gasoline consumption last year plunged 30% compared to 2019. While motorists used 100 million liters per day of gasoline in 2019, the figure fell to 70 million liters in 2020, IRNA reported.
The pattern of decline is said to be due the rise in the use of inexpensive CNG and lockdowns after the coronavirus struck last February.
Each cubic meter of CNG is sold for 5,000 rials (1.6 cents) while a liter of subsidized gasoline costs 15,000 rials (5 cents) and non-subsidized fuel 30,000 rials (10 cents).
Hammering economies in most countries, Covid-19 has cut short millions of lives and wiped out livelihoods and businesses. More than 95.1 million people have been diagnosed with the deadly disease worldwide and the death toll has surpassed 2.03 million. In Iran, up until Monday, health officials confirmed 1.3 million infections and 57,000 deaths.
Global fuel demand has dropped by 50% in some key markets as western and other economies struggle to control the pandemic with little success.
Oil refineries have slashed processing rates as the gasoline and oil markets suffer with traders particularly concerned about the US, the world’s largest market.
Emission standards define the acceptable limits for exhaust fumes of vehicles. European emission standards are outlined in a series of European Union directives on the progressive introduction of increasingly stringent standards.