What are aromatics, what's their chemical composition and how are they manufactured?

Why is there benzene in gasoline? What about “clean fuels”?

Benzene is a natural component of crude oil, from which gasoline is produced after refining. Industry has taken significant steps to reduce the level of benzene by adapting its formulation of gasoline. Furthermore, industry is upgrading the excess benzene from gasoline into valuable products, such as medical devices, food packaging, auto parts and nylon fibres.

Automotive fuel quality plays an important role in determining the nature and quantity of pollutants emitted by motor vehicles. Cleaner fuels can significantly reduce this source of air pollution.

With the Clean Fuels Directive, the benzene content in the gasoline has been reduced from 5% to 1% as per 1 January 2000, which will have a significant, positive impact on the consumer’s exposure during car refuelling. The European Commission has fixed more stringent standards like the total aromatics content in the gasoline that was reduced to 35% from January 1st 2005.  Further reviews have concluded that there was no need to reduce it further.