The Government's failure to immediately commit to lowering blood alcohol limits for adult drivers is "just not good enough", say advocacy organisations.

Transport Minister Steven Joyce today released the new Transport Ministry 10-year road safety strategy Safer Journeys.

Mr Joyce said Cabinet had not yet decided about whether or not to reduce the current adult blood alcohol consumption limit from 80mg/100ml (0.08) to 50mg/100ml (0.05).

Australian guidelines said that for women (of average height and weight) 0.05 equated to one standard drink per hour. For men (again of average height and weight), it equated to two standard drinks in the first hour and one standard drink per hour afterwards.

A limit of 0.08 allowed a man to consume six standard drinks within 90 minutes; for a woman it allowed four standard drinks to be consumed.

Most New Zealanders, when asked, Mr Joyce said, agreed the limit should be lower but were split when asked if it should be lowered to 0.05.

Mr Joyce said Cabinet had not yet decided whether to reduce the current adult blood alcohol consumption limit, but that it would be put to Cabinet in April.

Alcohol Healthwatch director Rebecca Williams said she was disappointed Mr Joyce could not make a commitment.

"The evidence is absolutely clear - we will save lives, 14 lives a year - and we could do this now, from April. To leave it to maybe, if and when is just not good enough.

"New Zealand is now really out of step with international best practice. We have witnessed other countries lower their limits, yet we still don't make a commitment to it. It's just a no-brainer."

Enforcing a zero alcohol limit on young people yet condoning a high alcohol limit for adults would be wrong, Ms Williams said.

"Having a zero limit for young people and 80mg for older people sends mixed messages and could potentially undermine other parts of the strategy, when adults aren't required to set a good example. It's dangerous that such different messages are being given to young people."

The decision should be made now and public awareness should follow, she said.

"Do we have to wait another 10 years? That's 14 times 10 lives lost.

"The decision in this strategy should be to do it and build public support to explain why.

"They should lead off the front foot and do the things they know is going to work."

Alcohol Advisory Council chief executive Gerard Vaughan said his organisation also pressed to have the blood alcohol limit reduced.

"It will have a great benefit to the country in terms of lives saved. You just have to look across the ditch to Australia to see there was a great improvement in road safety once they reduced their BAC [blood alcohol content] levels."