Fleet News

Local authorities 'thwarting LPG infrastructure'

LOCAL authority planning departments are thwarting the efforts of BP to establish a liquefied petroleum gas refuelling infrastructure. The oil giant had pledged to open 70 LPG sites by the end of this year, but so far has only managed three, with two more under construction.

Dean White, BP Amoco's UK clean fuels project manager, said the company had applied for planning permission to install LPG pumps on 70 forecourts but was having many of its plans rejected. 'Local authorities are saying gas does not fit in with their requirements,' he said.

BP's planning problems presage even greater difficulties in the future as the company bids to honour its pledge to open 300 LPG refuelling stations within five years. The LPG Association's code of practice, endorsed by the Health & Safety Executive, requires a 7.5-metre safety cordon around gas tanks. This means each tank needs about 150 square metres, an area not available on most forecourts.BP is in negotiations with the LPGA to reduce the 7.5 metres cordon to 4 metres, claiming that it would adopt additional safety measures.

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