Garages could have to pay extra for removing waste oil
Garages could have to pay extra for removing waste oil

The Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI) hopes to save garages £5000 in fuel bills by defending the use of small waste oil burners (SWOB) to the government.

SWOBS can be found in garages up and down the country, burning waste engine oil and heating workshops for free.

The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has decided to conduct a review into the use of SWOBS with a view to banning their use altogether.

The RMI, along with the Garage Equipment Association (GEA), has been campaigning on behalf of garages to stop the review.

RMI director Stuart James said: “Independent garages across the UK rely on SWOBs as a consistent way of heating their garages as well as disposing of their waste oil. If SWOBs were banned, already cash strapped garages could see a rise in their utility bills of an average of £5000.”

James commented that as well as upping their fuel bills, garages would then also have to pay to have the waste oil professionally removed and transported. He said the RMI are currently in discussions with DEFRA, and are making sure the views of the industry well heard.

GEA chief executive Dave Garret added: “At the moment, businesses using SWOBs burn their waste oil locally. If SWOBs are no longer an option then the waste oil would need to be stored until there was a large enough quantity and then collected by a disposal company.”

The RMI has said that if the ban goes ahead, the environmental impact will be negligible, but the impact on workshops will be ‘catastrophic.’

The use of SWOBs has already come under threat once before from the Waste Incineration Directive in 2000. However the government said that SWOBs could continue to be used as long as garages had an environmental permit from their local council.

Published by Darrenmoss

CAT magazine's in-house reporter and self-confessed petrol head

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