The UK and Irish governments are to bring in a new product to mark red diesel (green diesel in Ireland) in an attempt to help reduce illegal fuel laundering from the 1st April 2015.
The dye will also be used for marking kerosene primarily used for home heating oil.
The new marker will make rebated fuel harder for fraudsters to ‘launder’ (i.e. remove the marker from it) and sell on at a profit. Launderers filter the fuel through chemicals or acids to remove the government marker. The chemicals and acids remain in the fuel and can damage fuel pumps in diesel cars.
The marker will be produced by the Dow Chemical Company. The government believes the chosen marker has proved to be significantly more resistant to known laundering techniques. It will be implemented in consultation with the oil industry and other affected sectors and will be used alongside the current marker mix.
The move to a more resistant dye could also help to reduce fuel thefts from farms.