Fuel costs in Northern Ireland could be cut by 10% thanks to a plan to introduce energy-efficient 'eco-tyres', says the province's Sustainable Development Commission (SDC).
It notes that conventional tyres absorb a third of total energy use in cars, and that better fuel efficiency would lead to a CO2 cut equivalent to 1.3 million cars a year off European roads.
EC rules will require a new labelling system for 'eco-tyres' from 2012.
Says Belgian MEP Ivo Belet: "The new system is simple and clear. It provides the industry with no significant additional costs.
"We believe that the label will be picked up early by quality manufacturers, it works in their case as a recommendation."
SDC boss Jim Kitche says: "This measure will not physically remove any traffic from our roads - congestion and traffic-related health problems will remain.
"But given that many people would like to reduce their dependence on the car and the additional benefits these measures would achieve, these tyres should be given higher priority than measures to make car use more efficient."
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