Every year the U.S. spends millions of dollars on foreign oil. Despite the natural resources that we have in our own country, we continue to buy products from other countries and spare little money for education, health insurance and other important national expenses.
The best way to get around our huge deficit is to use more of our own homegrown products as fuel sources to support our major economic businesses.
Biodiesel fuel is an alternative fuel source that is widely available and easy to acquire. According to a study conducted by the U.S. Departments of Energy and Agriculture in 1998, using biodiesel fuel reduces carbon dioxide emissions by 78% when compared to regular petroleum fuel.
That means that if more cars, factories and anything with a gas engine used biodiesel, we could drastically reduce the greenhouse gases in the air that are contributing to global warming.
What is a biodiesel fuel vehicle?
A biodiesel fuel vehicle is a vehicle that uses renewable fuel sources, such as vegetable oil and animal fats, to power and run a diesel engine.
What can be used for biodiesel fuel?
Biodiesel fuel, which is a type of biofuel, can be created from animal fats, restaurant grease from cooking food, oil from vegetables such as soybeans and corn, and even algae.
How does a biodiesel fuel car work?
A biodiesel fuel car can use 100% biodiesel sources to power a car engine, or it can combine natural oils and fats with regular petroleum diesel to create a biodiesel blend. But you can’t just use straight animal fats or vegetable oils as fuel. They have to undergo a chemical reaction, known as transesterification, in which the fat or oil is purified and reacted with alcohol to form esters and glycerol. The end product can be used alone or mixed with regular petroleum fuel.
To learn more about how a biodiesel fuel car works click here.
What are the advantages of having a biodiesel fuel vehicle?
There are many benefits of having a biodiesel biofuel car:
- Sources such as vegetable oil and animal fats are always available
- The U.S. doesn’t have to rely on foreign countries for oil
- Biodiesel reduces carbon dioxide emissions
- You can cut your gas bill in half
- The lubrication from the oils can extend the lifetimes of engines
- You can grow your own biodiesel sources
- Reduces carbon monoxide emissions by 50%
- Biodiesel is non-toxic and biodegradable
Are there any drawbacks?
Even though biodiesel fuel sources are renewable and abundant, there are still a few drawbacks to using this type of fuel. One drawback is that biodiesel that uses certain yellow greases can clog filters and cause the engine to stall.
Another drawback is that it is expensive to grow the vegetables and feed the animals that produce the renewable fats and oils. The best thing we could do to save money and to support renewable energy is to reuse cooking oil.
What are my options if I want to get a biodiesel vehicle?
Almost every car company out there has a biodiesel brand vehicle. The most recognized car manufacturers are Jeep, Volkswagen, Mercedes Benz and Dodge. You can find new and used biodiesel cars on the BiodieselAmerica.org website.
Biodiesel is a non-toxic and safe alternative to regular petroleum fuel. To learn more about research and development of biodiesel fuel sources you can check out the National Biodiesel Board website.