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March 31, 2005

Kyoto showing the way in Biodiesel

I have been thinking about how biodiesel helps cities meet their Kyoto global warming committments, then I come across this: Japan for Sustainability. Kyoto itself has set up a waste oil (home and business) collection system that is manufactured into Biodiesel for the city owned garbage trucks and municipal buses. That is an advantage of Japan's more socialized system. They operate those two fleets themselves. In Seattle and most US cities, these two are contractors run for-profit. When those companies have to turn a profit and don't have the incentive to make a closed-loop system (with their potential competitors), it is harder to implement. But we will get there.

Posted by Martin at 10:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

More on navy and Biodiesel

U.S. Navy Calls for Broad Use of Biodiesel at Navy and Marine Facilities
March 31, 2005
Source: Clean Edge News

Demonstrating federal leadership in the use of biodiesel, the U.S. Department of the Navy recently announced a new policy that will lead to greater use of the domestically produced fuel and increase U.S. energy security by reducing dependence on foreign sources of oil. Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Wayne Arny has issued a memorandum that establishes a policy that all U.S. Navy and Marine nontactical diesel vehicles shall operate on a blend of 20% biodiesel fuel (B20) no later than June 1, 2005.

A cleaner-burning alternative to petroleum-based diesel, biodiesel is made from renewable resources like soybeans and other natural fats and oils, grown in the United States. It can be used in its pure form (B100) or can be blended at any level with petroleum diesel. It can be used in diesel engines with few or no modifications. The U.S. Navy, Army, Air Force and Marines all use B20, a mixture of 20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent diesel, at different bases and stations throughout the country.

“We commend the Navy for its leadership role in advancing the use of biodiesel and other alternative fuels,” said Joe Jobe, NBB executive director. “With the U.S. importing more than half of all oil consumed, turning to domestic energy sources like biodiesel is critical. The Navy is setting a positive example for the rest of the nation with this new policy.” Jobe added that the Navy is the largest user of diesel fuel in the world, and is charged with protecting shipping routes to import petroleum to the United States. “Naval leaders clearly recognize the responsibility the Navy has to reduce its own use of petroleum, and we commend them for that.”

The January 18, 2005 Navy memo provided guidance for biodiesel use including that it can be supplied by the Defense Energy Support Center (DESC) and used where adequate fuel tanks are available. The policy does not apply to tactical military equipment or deployable commercial equipment intended to support contingency operations.

In 2003, Naval Base Ventura County (NBVC) in Port Hueneme, Calif. began a unique pilot program making biodiesel from its own biodiesel processing unit. Eventually, the Navy could send portable biodiesel processing units overseas to produce its own fuel while on missions abroad. This could give the U.S. military a tactical advantage should fuel supplies becompromised.

Other Naval facilities that use biodiesel include: Navy Public Works Center San Diego, CA; Navy Public Works Center Washington, DC; Navy Public Works Center Pearl Harbor, HI; Naval Air Station JRB Willow Grove, PA; Commander of Navy Region Northwest, Everett, WA; Fleet and Industrial Supply Center Puget Sound, Bremerton, WA.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) comprehensive technical report of biodiesel emissions data shows the exhaust emissions of particulate matter from pure biodiesel are about 47 percent lower than overall particulate matter emissions from diesel. Breathing particulate has been shown to be a human health hazard. Biodiesel emissions also reduce by 80 to 90 percent potential cancer causing compounds called Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) and nitrated PAH. Biodiesel also reduces emissions of total unburned hydrocarbons, a contributing factor to smog and ozone, by about 68 percent. Carbon monoxide is reduced by about 48 percent.

The United Soybean Board and state soybean board checkoff programs funded much of the development of the biodiesel industry in the United States. Soybean farmers have invested millions of dollars in bringing biodiesel into commercial success. Today, it is the fastest growing alternative fuel in America, and about 500 major fleets use biodiesel nationwide. Biodiesel has similar horsepower, torque and BTU content compared to petroleum diesel. It offers excellent lubricity and higher cetane than diesel fuel. Biodiesel is registered with the EPA as a fuel and fuel additive.

Posted by Martin at 8:06 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 27, 2005

Now here is what I need

eBay item 7502098488 (Ends Mar-28-05 00:00:00 PST) - KOHLER Electric Plant 135 KW Diesel Generator. Wouldn't it be nice to start the world's first B100 electric company? You can with this generator.

Posted by Martin at 11:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Biodiesel is a selling point in used cars

Found this item on ebay eBay item 4537741719 (Ends Mar-28-05 15:55:00 PST) - Volkswagen : New Beetle (1998-present). They are marketing it as "biodiesel compatible".

This reminds me of the early days of ebay and paypal when you could have paypal go over to ebay and put the "paypal" logo on all your auctions. It was a branding exercise and a value-add to my auctions. I know from personal experience that "biodiesel" diesel cars are more in demand than just straight diesel cars. That may not sound intuitive since any diesel can run biodiesel, but it has been my experience that people aware of biodiesel put a premium on things related to it. Hummm... interesting.

Posted by Martin at 11:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Harkin supports new Biodiesel tax credit

Daily Nonpareil - News - 03/19/2005 - Harkin continues push for ethanol. Write your legislator and support this. Much of the renewable fuels legislation has been written by the Ethanol industry. Representatives are only now getting around to adding Biodiesel. Support this.

Posted by Martin at 11:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 24, 2005

US Navy and Marines mandate Biodiesel in June

wow, movement. RenewableEnergyAccess.com | Biodiesel Mandate for Navy and Marine Facilities. They also use B100. Go Navy!

Posted by Martin at 2:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 18, 2005

VW finally approves B5

From Green car Congress. Well they pulled the Touareg but support b5 now. Funny since they support B100 in the same cars in Europe. Politics...

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March 14, 2005

VW pulls the Touareg V10 TDI

VW Touareg V10 dead in tracks - Autoblog - www.autoblog.com. Well I called my local dealer and he couldn't confirm it although the VW site does. Glad I got mine! Turns out it is those obstuctionist EPA do nothings again mandating some more random make work for a car that has already passed the much more strick European standards with flying colors. America is really in the dark ages here.

Posted by Martin at 10:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

NW biodiesel forum this saturday

At the Phinney Ridge community center. I will be driving the Touareg V10 TDI there! News

Posted by Martin at 10:24 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

B100 in your motorcycles

Of course Diesel motorbikes: Journey to Forever has compiled a list. I am thinking about ordering the Enfield.

Posted by Martin at 10:05 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Diesel Harley?

Apparently Harold Benich, of Albion, Pennsylvania created one: Biodiesel.org - Users. He cheated a little by wedging a construction generator engine into his harley frame. So it is not really a Harley. It is only a Harley roling stock. I got excited there for a minute when I thought about converting my harley engine to diesel. Not so simple...

Posted by Martin at 9:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Want to home brew B100?

All you need is here: LocalB100. I bought a kit off e-bay to do it, but haven't done it yet. The instructions suggest a bio/chem hazard suit and a clean room. I have neither. But I have seen other people make Biodiesel in a Blender.

Posted by Martin at 8:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Berkley is having a Biodiesel film festival

Who would have thunk there were enough films?
But there are. Would like to get these up to Seattle!

There's a bit of a tradition of having biodiesel events in mid-march due to Rudolph Diesels' birthday being March 19th. Here's what's happening in Berkeley:

The Berkeley Biodiesel Collective is a project of the Ecology Center

Biodiesel Film Festival
7-10 PM Thursday, March 17th. All Ages. $10 at the door. La Peña, 3105 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley.
Berkeley Biodiesel Collective (BBC) Presents:
Biodiesel Film Festival
7-10 PM , March 17, La Peña, 3105 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley

Why are a squad of lefty activists visiting fast-food restaurants from here to NYC? They're trying to persuade slackers to vote. Thirteen musicians in two Mission District rock bands, Aphrodesia and Rock Me Pony, are taking their veggie powered "Vote- Mobile'' on a cross-country tour through swing states.

Fat of the Land
>From New York to San Francisco, five women careen across the nation
stopping at greasy spoons, asking for leftover frying oil to fuel their vehicle. Through interviews and chance encounters, the video sardonically critiques the stranglehold petroleum has on our economy while investigating one fuel for the future - vegetable oil! (40 min)

Trailer: Fields of Fuel
Joshua Tickell's feature length film unveils a curtain of deception covering America's dependence on foreign oil as it explores biodiesel as one possible solution to the coming energy crisis.
The Veggie Van Voyage
Follow Joshua on a journey from Florida to San Francisco. (12min)

Introduction to: End of Suburbia
What does Oil Peak mean for North America? As energy prices skyrocket in the coming years, how will the populations of suburbia react to the collapse of their dream? Are today's suburbs destined to become the slums of tomorrow? And what can be done NOW, individually and collectively, to avoid The End of Suburbia?

French Fries to Go
This award winning film features the self-described Granola Ayatollah of Canola, Charris Ford, founder of Grassolean Solutions LLC and his passion for biodiesel. (14min)

7-10 PM Thursday, March 17th, 2005
All Ages $10 at the door - no one turned away for lack of funds La Peña Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley CA.
www.BerkeleyBiodiesel.org (510) 594-4000 ext. 777

Posted by Martin at 8:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

West coast Biodiesel events

thanks Girl Mark for this link. green-trust.org :: View Forum - Events. The list should be updated regularly for these states:


Posted by Martin at 7:59 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

The ultimate oil source

Thanks Rob for the following info: The best source of oil for biodiesel is algae. Now the government has been claiming a monopoly on that technology and process, but there are a couple of renagades who are bucking the system. Down in TN at ecogenics Marc is making closed loop algae ponds in which you can grow algae. He is currently growing algae and fish and getting methane and other things, but apparently is working on a pond and algae stock that would be optimized for oil production for biodiesel. Says it will be ready by August. If so, I will be one of the first in line to buy.

Check this out- small scale biodiesel production from algae (back yard pond)



>>>Compare $5000.00 for a complete 85 ft.x20ft Ecogenics closed loop ecosystem (Basic model) to the cost of any other algae production pond or bioreactor.
the above price includes all pumps, heater,lights, ventilation system, temperature sensors, tilapia fish and algae start up stock
does not include installation of hookup to utilities.
additional costs:
$350 for the two day training seminar,
$1200 excavation cost.
there is no other system available that performs as this one does compared to the profit potential of this system, the cost is inconsequential.
we now have an even cheaper "Backyard" system for suburban environments that well introduce in april.
with these systems we hope to create a decentralised nationwide algae production program.
many people buy two or more ponds.we are working on a proposal for a complex of 100 ponds at this time
It may not be possible to grow the tilapia if one decides to produce oil bearing algae, since the nutritional requirements, temperature and water conditions may not be the compatible with the fish.

Posted by Martin at 7:11 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

VW 1 litre diesel concept

It came out in 2002, so many of you may have seen it: SUPERCARS.NET - 2002 Volkswagen 1-Litre Concept. I love these concept cars, but we dont' even need to go that far to find good diesel cars. All we have to do is go to Europe. Now VW is pulling my Touareg from the US market. What are they thinking? That is the wrong direction guys!

Posted by Martin at 7:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

How much Biodiesel to replace all Terror Diesel?

A chap over in Europe has done the analysis of what it would take for Europe to replace all it's (growing) diesel consumption with Biodiesel: Hybrid BioDiesel Car: How much biodiesel?. The numbers of acres of canola required are quite high and Europe doesn't have the land. But here is an interesting twist: Palm is about 10x more productive than Canola for oil. Palm grow like crazy in Africa. Africa needs an economic engine. Grow the palm down there under contract then ship it to Europe for refining. Now you solve Afrrican development issues AND European dependance/air quality issues. Now you are talking...

When I get a minute, I should do the same analysis for the US. Or does anyone have the numbers?

Posted by Martin at 7:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Rob's thoughts on Biodiesel

Rob commented on a SeattlePI story this weekend...

The Ferry System fuel budget overruns are simply a very public example of the new energy reality. We don't hear much about the small WA timber haulers parking their trucks due to fuel cost, or the upcoming rise in the cost of muffins from the small local delivery fleet due to fuel cost. But the costs are indeed here. It's clear we've reached "peak oil" and the only way to increase supply is bidding the price up. Saudi Arabia hasn't found a new oil field in 30 years. China and India are leading increased global crude oil demand. Energy traders and prognosticators have been forecasting, as recently as last fall, that oil will return to $25bbl. Who is building budgets around these forecasts, at the expense of reality? Most of us. USA domestic supplies are drying out and drilling ANWAR would won't bring additional supplies online for 10 years. I expect diesel and gas pricing to remain at this level or possibly, increase dramatically. Obviously, We need more efficient vehicles and new fuel sources promptly.

We do have alternatives to our energy crisis. Renewable USA made fuels and energy sources that contribute to our economy, diminish our funding of terrorist supporting nation-states, and are less polluting to our environment. On the vehicle side, hybrids, efficient diesels and electric transit all help. Why are 60% of new autos in Europe diesel? Europeans see diesel's increased efficiency (as much as 40% over gas engines) as a path for reduced oil consumption. On the fuel side, ethanol and biodiesel are clean and USA made. Biodiesel is the killer app today. Simply replace foreign imports with soy oil biodiesel (a surplus byproduct of soy meal available for fuel). There are no easy answers. Hybrid Prius is still burning foreign oil. We need equal playing field for alternatives, empower US business to solves these problems, and move forward with answers available today. There is no perfect answer. But we do have a real energy problem, now. And we deserve options, now. Washington State in burning 100,000 gallons+ of terrorist defeating, clean burning, economy boosting biodiesel per month. Which is a good amount, but we can do much better.

Unfortunately Big Oil and our Gov't prefer to defer our options. The putative Hydrogen Economy faces serious challenges, including costs, a negative true energy balance, safety, and vehicle range. The feasible Hydrogen Economy is 50 years out at best. Why do we look to Hydrogen? Well, simply because the utopian idea is fascinating enough for Big Oil and Detroit to dangle in front of us as they make record profits for their oil shareholders. Looking to existing energy corporations or Detroit to solve our energy issues is like looking to the Marlboro Man to quit smoking.


Posted by Martin at 11:20 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 7, 2005

Is B100 acceptable as "green power"?

Not yet by Puget Sound Energy. Their Greep Power program: Puget Sound Energy will sell consumers "green" power for a premium all day long. But it looks like they only buy "green" power today from solar and wind producers. What about biodiesel generators? That is just as renewable, although maybe a bit more NoX. I wonder how you get an electrical generator certified as "green"?

Posted by Martin at 11:57 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Presentations from Harvest Clean Energy conference in January

If you scroll through here: Harvesting Conference V Agenda you will find a number of quite informative presentations by many of the leading lights of northwest renewable energy. I am a sucker for all of the stuff still in the university research stages. Read the presentations from the professors first.

Posted by Martin at 9:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Harvest Clean Energy action plan for Northwest

HarvestCleanEnergy.org has come out with a primer for the Northwest outlining all the different ways to "harvest clean energy". The paper has some very detailed action plan statements. Most involve action by the state. Would be nice to see less policy oriented recommendations and more recommendations for entrepreneurs. What can a guy with some extra jingle in his pocket and a desire to change things do?

Posted by Martin at 9:45 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

New IRS forms for Biodiesel tax credits came out today

thanks for the heads up from the NBB

Dear Biodiesel Supporter:


To: NBB Members and Stakeholders
From: Scott Hughes, Regulatory Director
Date: March 4, 2005
Re: IRS Publishes Updated Biodiesel Tax Incentive Claim Forms

The IRS has updated and published the first in a series of registration and claim forms associated with new federal biodiesel tax incentive. The newly updated and available form is Form 8849—Claim for Refund of Excise Tax and the accompanying schedules including Schedule C—Alcohol Fuel Mixtures and Biodiesel Mixtures.

These updated documents can be found on the IRS website: http://www.irs.gov/formspubs/lists/0,,id=97817,00.html.

This link will take you to the “Forms and Instructions” page of the IRS website. The complete listing of Forms is at the bottom of the page. Forms are listed by numerical number. Scroll through the list until you see the listings for “Form 8849”. The updated Form 8849 and accompanying Schedules on the listing are preceded by the number “0205”. (i.e. 0205 Form 8849 Claim for Refund of Excise Taxes; 0205 Form 8849 (Schedule C)…).

Entities would generally utilize the Form 8849 and its Schedules to claim a refund for excess biodiesel excise tax mixture credits (ex. blending into dyed diesel fuel).

The “Forms and Instructions” page also contains listings for the other pertinent Forms required to be used for registration of biodiesel producers and blenders, as well as making claims. Those Forms—Form 637, Form 720, Form 4136—are anticipated to be updated and published in the next few days. We will continue to monitor the site for any new developments in the release of these Forms.

Scott Hughes
Regulatory Director

Posted by Martin at 8:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 6, 2005

Diesel history

Check this article out...First Cross-country Flight of the Packard-Diesel Powered Aircraft, May 13, 1929. I didn't kow Packard made Diesels back in the day, much less airplanes. Sure this is 1929, but it shows how there used to actually be innovation in things like airplanes. America has become so complacent these days in the transportation industry. It is time for another round of innovation. And Biodiesel should show us the way.

Posted by Martin at 8:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Where can I buy a diesel generator?

Here my friend: Diesel Generators - Kubota, Honda, Kohler, Mitsubishi, Daewoo, John Deere, Volvo, Volkswagon, SDMO, Lister Petter I have my new house wired with a transfer panel that will allow me to install a generator later. I haven't bought one yet. I am in a residential area so have to worry about sound. But I want to run it on biodiesel. Have to get the sizing right. I wonder if I could set up a pre-heater to run it on SVO for free? That would be worth it. I am also space constrained. Was thinking about some old military generators but they are VERY large (although cheaper). I think I will go with one of these new ones with a sound enclosure. Now which one?..

Posted by Martin at 8:20 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

March 4, 2005

Here is the raw emissions data

EPA : Global Warming : Resource Center : Publications : GHG Emissions : US Emissions Inventory 2005. I haven't downloaded it all yet, but I bet burried in this report is the data you need to calculate what the impact of converting all diesel consumption to B100 would be in terms of emissions. Anyone got time to do the calculation?

Posted by Martin at 10:31 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 3, 2005

Kyoto could be a boon for BioDiesel

Canada may have to buy $1.4B in emmisions credits under Kyoto: IETA - International Emissions Trading Association. I wonder if anyone has done the math to figure out how many emmission credits you would get by switching a diesel fleet to biodiesel? I will do that math sometime when I get a spare moment.

In a world (except the US) driven by Kyoto emission restrictions though and a requirement to buy/sell credits to make up the difference, people are going to have an extra added incentive to find ways to get credits with the lowest capital cost possible. Changing your fuel is an incredibly easy way. I wonder what the emission credits would be generated if the whole diesel fleet went B100. Now that would be an interesting number.

Posted by Martin at 5:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

a 62 MGP diesel beetle!

This Guy Stop global warming with a little whale tail modification to his beetle has reduced drag and gotten the thing to go 62mpg. Now think about that running biodiesel!

Posted by Martin at 5:09 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Some upcoming Biodiesel events

From the NBB.
I should come up with a separate page for these...

World Refining & Fuels Conference
March 9-11
San Francisco

Central Biofuels Conference and Expo
March 29-31
San Jose, Costa Rica, the Real Intercontinental Hotel

6th Annual Environmentally Preferable and Recycled Products Trade Show
April 6-7
Ontario Convention Center
Ontario, California

National Assoc. of Fleet Administrators (NAFA), Inc., FMI Conference
April 10-13
Grapevine, TX

27th Symposium on Biotechnology for Fuels and Chemicals
May 1-4
Denver, CO

11th Annual Clean Cities Conference & Expo
May 1-4
Palm Springs, CA

NBB Board Meeting
June 13-14
Washington, D.C.

Solar Energy International Biodiesel Workshop
June 27-July 1
Boulder, CO

21st Annual International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo
June 28-July 1, 2005
Kansas City Marriott Downtown & Kansas City Convention Center
Kansas City, MO

Solar Energy International Biodiesel Workshop
June 27-July 1
Boulder, CO

Posted by Martin at 11:17 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

History channel biodiesel blurg

the NBB pointed to this helpful historical video. It is of course done by the soy guys so there is a soy bias. I hope that gets out of the NBB at some point. Biodiesel is WAY more than Soy. The industry evangelism needs to expand to get more people involved, more people to the table.

Posted by Martin at 11:11 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Ethanol Production a record in 2004

The Renewable Fuels Association reports today:

Ethanol Production Reaches New Heights in 2004
The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) announced last week that the U.S. ethanol fuel industry set an annual production record of 3.4 billion gallons in 2004, an increase of 21 percent from the 2.81 billion gallons produced in 2003. In December, the industry produced 232,000 barrels per day of ethanol, tying the monthly record set in November, and beating ethanol production in December 2003 by 25,000 barrels per day. Including imports, U.S. petroleum companies used a record 3.53 billion gallons of ethanol in 2004.

Since late November, four new plants have started producing ethanol: one in Nebraska, one in Missouri, and two in Iowa. The latest one, near Emmetsburg, Iowa, started producing ethanol last week. In addition, an ethanol plant near Oshkosh, Wisconsin, finished doubling its capacity in December. According to RFA, there are currently 83 ethanol fuel plants nationwide with the capacity to produce more than 3.7 billion gallons of ethanol each year. In addition, 15 ethanol fuel plants now under construction and two major expansions now underway will eventually add nearly 700 million gallons in new ethanol production capacity. See the RFA press releases.

What is interesting is that the stated capacity of the industry is greater than the yearly consumption but we still import. Why is that? The Ethanol industry has much to teach the Biodiesel industry. But they don't have the option of running vehicles on 100% ethanol without any change to the engine. That is the beauty of B100.

Posted by Martin at 11:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 1, 2005

Lexus and Toyota diesels in Geneva

The new models in Europe just keep coming. Green Car Congress: Lexus Introduces First Diesel. Thanks GCC for sharing these.

Posted by Martin at 10:34 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Thanks to Green Car Congress: Comparing Accords: Diesel, Hybrid and Gasoline for doing the work to compare the diesel Accord platform with the Hypbrid sedan, the EX and the LX. The all diesel platform won in terms of fuel effeciency and CO2. But that is on petroleum diesel. I wonder what the B100 ratings are? Probably similar on fuel economy (maybe slightly less) but way better on emissions. Another vector that would be interesting is the renewability of the fuel source. Even 33 MPG on gas achieved with some electric boost is still 33 miles driven on dinasaurs!


Posted by Martin at 10:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Honda Diesel plans

Many of you may have already seen this, but here is an article from last year on Honda's US Diesel plans. AutoWeek - The Auto Enthusiast's Online Resource I look forward to more US diesel models to choose from.

Posted by Martin at 10:29 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack