“Leaded petrol to be phased out by March”

Atrasos no cumprimento da substituição por gasolina sem chumbo.

4 Jan: Agência de informação de Moçambique, tirado de AllAfrica.com. O artigo completo aqui

(…) So unleaded petrol will be passed through all the tubes and tanks in the distribution system, until the leaded fuel has been thoroughly flushed out. Braga believed this process would be completed by March, “and as from then, it can be said that we are using unleaded petrol”. (…)

Mozambique will phase out leaded petrol by March, rather than by this month as initially hoped.

Manuel Braga, the general manager of IMOPETRO, the body representing Mozambican fuel importers, told AIM on Wednesday that, although leaded petrol is still being sold, it is no longer being imported.

Braga said Mozambique could not simply clean out all tanks contain leaded petrol, since this would have cost millions of US dollars. Instead the leaded petrol is being diluted with the unleaded variety.

So unleaded petrol will be passed through all the tubes and tanks in the distribution system, until the leaded fuel has been thoroughly flushed out. Braga believed this process would be completed by March, “and as from then, it can be said that we are using unleaded petrol”.

This means that Mozambique has missed the SADC (Southern African Development Community) target of phasing out leaded petrol by the end of 2005. An agreement among southern African leaders to this effect was reached in 2001. Last year, only 15 per cent of the petrol consumed in Mozambique was unleaded. Leaded petrol is on the way out all over the world mainly because of the damaging effects of lead on human health. Thus children exposed to high levels of lead can suffer stunted physical and mental growth. The main source of lead contamination in the air people breathe is the leaded petrol used in internal combustion engines.

Braga also told AIM that, despite the sharp increases this year in the price of liquid fuels, consumption of petrol in Mozambique has increased – rising from 437,000 cubic metres in the first nine months of 2004, to 462,000 cubic metres in the same period in 2005, an increase of 5.5 per cent.

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