Max speed limit dropped to 110 kph to save fuel
The Council of Ministers has approved today a decision to reduce the speed limit on Spanish highways and motorways from the current 120 km / h to 110 km / h “on a transitional basis.” The First Deputy Prime Minister, Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba (pictured), said that this is an emergency measure implemented in Spain to save fuel, although he refused to say how long the measures will last for.
Rubalcaba said that this move will save around 15% of fuel. He also noted that as part of the measure of implementing this new rule, which will become effective on March 7, an “urgent campaign to replace all speed limit signs” will be carried out across the nation.
Apart from reducing the speed limit, Rubalcaba announced additional measures aimed at energy saving, such as reducing the price of train tickets on Renfe Media and Corta routes by 5% to promote public transport. Like the speed limit, this will be a temporary measure. Suburban services are the responsibility of the State in Spain, except in Catalonia, where the Generalitat assumes control.
The percentage of biofuel in our diesel fuel will be increased to 7%, to consume less petroleum products. Today, that percentage is only 5.8%.
Given the rising price of oil, with the barrel of ‘Brent’ currently at $ 112, the Executive has prepared a “preventative campaign” to save fuel. The executive estimated that each increase of $ 10 per barrel represents an increase of 6,000 million euros in energy expenditure in Spain.
“There is no risk of oil and gas shortage in the country, but we had to take some steps to save energy and ease the energy bill caused by the crisis in northern Africa,” Rubalcaba has told the nation at a press conference held Friday midday in Madrid.
The price per liter of gasoline are at record highs. According to the latest Oil Bulletin of the European Union, a liter of gasoline costs on average EUR 1.284, just a penny less than in January, but 16% more than in the same week in 2010 while a gallon of diesel stood at 1.247 euros.
So, now to fill a 55 liter tank of gas costs 70.6 euros, 9.2 euros more than a year ago, while a full diesel fuel tank costs 68.5 euros, 13.3 euros more than last year.