Biofuels


If you’ve ever had the thought of taking waste vegetable oil and converting it into biofuel but thought that you didn’t have enough space or time or knowledge… I dare say think again.

At From Red to Green,  a blog by an anonymous chap from the UK, you will find a chronicle of his attempt to, according to his About tab:

“lead an environmentally friendly life from other peoples waste. Oh, and one that might actually provide an income at some point…”

I read the blog from beginning to end to get a full grasp of what he was doing (and going back to the “lack of knowledge” that I was talking about, I was humbled by how little I really knew about biofuel comparitively). Also, I should note that he found alot of what he needed to know on-line and through trial and error.

Within a month he went from leaving leaflets at local restaurants and takeaways to gaining the possibility of collecting WVO from over one hundred schools in his county. And the proof is in his pictures and descriptions that for American’s require a bit of conversion (ex. liters to gallons and pounds to dollars)

The blog ends abruptly with his exclamation on March 1, 2008:

“A whopping 440 litres tonight! -)

Maybe it’s because he’s so busy and couldn’t get back to the computer but I can’t wait to hear what he says when he does come back. He doesn’t have an RSS feed or a blog roll (really he has a bare template, nothing categorized). I’m hopeful that he’s doing well and my favorite picture of his (the one above) is from Feb. 29, entitled:

“The first 1000 litres is on its way to its new owner!”

I tried to contact the man who is blogging about manufacturing biofuel out of his backyard, and transporting in a horse box but haven’t heard back yet. His blog is a great story of making something out of nothing and to quote him “I am a great believer in not counting my chickens until they have hatched, grown up and are served in a bun with chilli mayo.”

Let me know what YOU think of the site by commenting below. Is this something American’s can do considering the state of our gas prices compared to Europe’s and is it something that is worth doing on a mass scale? It seems so new, yet profitable and earth friendly.

Oh and Join Green Collar Economy Directory if you have a Green Business you would like us to promote or if you are looking for a green solution.

Evolution Biodiesel Kits makes it possible for farmers and other small business owners stretch their fuel dollar by offering them customizable sized Biodiesel Kits.

What the article fails to point out is how the customers who buy and use the kits get the used cooking oil. I guess Bean’s Biofuel of Maine would be the kind of company that would facilitate that but I can’t tell from the article or the Evolution website whether or not they supply you with the cooking oil.

From the Evolution Website:

“With our processors you have the ability to make your own biodiesel fuel and save money on fossil fuel costs. We are here to help all and those concerned persons, farmers, small business owners, and anyone else interested in holding on to their hard earned money by making sound environmental decisions.”

Either way, they have created a sustainable way for diesel users to lower costs, gain profits, and save the environment: which is what we are all about here at GCM and Green Collar Economy. Plus, they’ve made a bit of ching themselves>

They have:

tripled their sales in two years. They have sold to customers in Europe, Canada, every state in the U.S. and some places in the Caribbean.

They are also expanding their manufacturing facility to keep up with demand, which now has a six week lead time. The new facility will be LEED Certified, of course, and Evolution will continue being a model for the surging sustainable businesses turning waste into energy and leading the way into the Green Collar Economy.

Big Truck

And they’re probably going to do it considering Bean’s Commercial Grease Inc. is the only company in the state collecting used cooking oil to convert into biofuels which can run tractors and large trucks and snow resort equipment. I found a list of 13 Biofuel Companies in the Green Collar Economy B2B Directory.

Businesses that NEED to run large diesel burning trucks to do what they do are switching to biodiesel and Bean offers a lower cost alternative according to the Kennebec Journal:

Last week, Bean was charging $4.16 a gallon for diesel at the pump compared to $4.39 at area gas stations. He also manufactures and delivers a “bioheat” product that blends #2 home heating oil with biofuel and saves people 18 to 22 cents per gallon.

University of Maine at Farmington, “Maine Composter of the Year (37 tons)” contributes its grease and so does Sugerloaf Ski Resort.

Bean is alone in manufacturing green fuel that keeps Maine industry running and as gas prices go up, the more likely he’ll have more company in the near future.

And if not, he could recieve more funding to expand his business. Currently, he can produce 935,000 gallons of biofuel from one million gallons of waste and the state creates 1.8 million gallons in all.