Cleaner fuel and cars leads to multi-billion dollar health and fuel savings

Dept of Climate Change, Energy, Environment & Water

The Hon Chris Bowen MP, Minister for Climate Change and Energy

The Hon Catherine King MP, Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government

Today the Albanese Government is announcing fuel quality and noxious emissions standards that will see Australians benefit from cleaner, more efficient cars on our roads, saving $6.1 billion in health and fuel costs to 2040.

Noxious emissions produced by vehicles contributed to more than 1,700 deaths in Australia in 2015 – 42 per cent more deaths than the road toll for that year.

A University of Melbourne study also found that more than 11,000 Australians die prematurely every year from transport emissions, while 19,000 people are hospitalised for heart and lung issues.

Following thorough consultation with industry and the community, new versions of new cars – including SUVs and light commercial vehicles – sold from December 2025 will need to comply with Euro 6d noxious emissions standards.

The Government will also reduce the amount of aromatic hydrocarbons in RON 95 petrol. All petrol vehicles on Australia’s roads will be able to use the new grade, while the existing 91 and 98 RON grades of petrol will be unaffected.

To simplify the change for fuel suppliers and customers, the Government will align the previously announced reduction in sulfur limits for all petrol with the new, strengthened aromatics limits. Petrol supplied from December 2025 will need to comply with the new standard.

Together, these updates will provide Australia with best-practice fuel and noxious emissions standards for new vehicles and save motorists through reduced fuel usage.

The updates will help protect Australians from harmful exhaust pollutants that cause respiratory illness and cancer.

It will bring Australia in line with 80 per cent of the global car market, including the US, Canada, the EU, United Kingdom, Japan, China, Korea and India.

Minister for Climate Change and Energy Chris Bowen said the updates were long overdue.

“The Albanese Government has a laser-like focus on bringing down transport costs and emissions,” Minister Bowen said.

“The former government talked a lot about making these changes but wasted years without action, now we’re getting on with the job of delivering better health and cost-of-living outcomes.

“These updates to our vehicle standards will see almost 18 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions cut from the transport sector by 2050 – equivalent to taking 280 000 cars off the road.”

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Catherine King said the changes would save lives.

“The changes, along with Fuel Efficiency Standards are part of delivering cleaner, cheaper to run cars and tackling transport costs for Australian families and businesses,” Minister King said.

“Tightening Australia’s noxious emissions standards will prevent deaths caused by toxic air pollution.

“Noxious emissions contribute to strokes, respiratory illnesses and cancer and equivalent standards have already been introduced in countries such as the US, China, India and Japan.”

The government will work with industry and consumer groups to communicate the changes to motorists before the improved fuel standard comes into effect.

/Public Release. View in full here.