Delay ‘red diesel’ changes says UK association

By Murray Pollok02 March 2022

The Scottish Plant Owners Association (SPOA) has called for the UK government to delay implementation of new legislation that will prevent construction equipment users from using low cost ‘red diesel’, and issued guidance to its members ahead of the 1 April deadline.

The Scottish plant owners association SPOA has published guidance on changes to red diesel in the UK.

SPOA is also calling on the Government to delay the legislation in part because of the situation in the Ukraine is likely to further increase fuel prices.

Callum Mackintosh, SPOA’s President, said the loss of red diesel was a “major change” for the industry and that Government should revise its plan based on the escalating situation in Ukraine.

“Fuel prices have shot up in the last few days to as much as £1.50+VAT (£1.80) per litre for white diesel in some parts of the UK. This is another hammer blow to the plant industry”, said Mackintosh.

“We simply cannot sustain this gross inflation of fuel price and the industry urgently needs a delay on the implementation date of 1st April. The SPOA has, therefore, written to the Chancellor of the Exchequer calling for a delay.”

The SPOA guidance document can be found here.

The UK government changed the laws surrounding the use of red diesel in its 2020 budget, with the changes to take effect on 1 April this year. Agricultural equipment users will still be able to use red diesel, but the construction and rental sectors will have to use higher priced standard diesel. The move is part of the government’s strategy to shift towards lower emission fuels.

The guidance, published on the trade association’s website (, has been written with the UK tax authorities and is a step-by-step guide on how to prepare for the changes.

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