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Biofuel Thieves Steal Restaurant Grease

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the going-green-red-handed dept.

Crime 165

TMB writes "In a move that The Simpson's foretold, thieves have begun stealing inedible kitchen grease for use in biofuels. From the article: 'It's known as inedible kitchen grease, or IKG, which was once deemed waste and used in animal feed, though now is "an elixir in the booming green economy," according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture. "The grease’s value as a biofuel is being increasingly recognized," the agency said last month. "IKG is now coveted, which makes it a target for theft.."

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165 comments

Simpsons did it (4, Insightful)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006076)

Wow, two jokes in one!

Re:Simpsons did it (5, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006474)

Wow, two jokes in one!

In Capitalist Eurozone Greece steals from EU!

Well, only if they default...

Re:Simpsons did it (3, Funny)

EEPROMS (889169) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007480)

Chief Wigim " The thieves are said to look like hippies and smell like a fast food restaurant....dam now I am hungry"

can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (1)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006134)

I have a 270G oil drum from when my house used to be oil heated. No longer used. Could I just dump my kitchen grease in there until it gets full? I guess it would take a few decades to get to 270G. How much does this stuff run? :)

Re:can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (3, Insightful)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006358)

most grease needs to be filtered before it can be used (or it'll clog your pipes, and then you won't be happy). IIRC there are instructions on what you need to do to turn used vegetable oil into biofuel for your car [journeytoforever.org].

You could definitely dump your grease in there until it gets full, what you'd do with it after that is another question to ask though :)

Re:can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (1)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006386)

My pipes would never be at risk. AT least, not any pipes that are used. If any pipes are still connected to my house [they shouldn't be, anymore], I'd actually want them to be clogged. I assume that restaurants and thieves are dealing with unfiltered, so I don't really need to do that, the burden of that should be on whoever picks it up to use it as biofuel. So the only other question really is: Would somebody buy 270G of years old grease that had been sitting in a oil drum for years? haha. I'd love to leverage my waste in such a way as to make money off of it...

Re:can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006640)

maybe, but they'd obviously just steal it...

Re:can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (1)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006714)

Nah. The thieves in this article aren't in my [somewhat dangerous and not well lit] suburban yard, they are around restaurants. Bonus points for humor tho :)

Re:can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (1)

ZorinLynx (31751) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008582)

Seeing that cooking grease is made of hydrocarbons, and life on earth uses hydrocarbons extensively in its makeup, there's a good chance that grease left sitting in a drum for decades would become something's dinner before you build up enough of it to sell it for even a few dollars.

Re:can I put my kitchen grease in my old oil drum? (1)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008606)

It's pretty secure. The raccoons prefer my attic anyway...

Why does my car smell like french fries... (4, Interesting)

potscott (539666) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006140)

It's incredibly easy to convert an old VW diesel to run on kitchen grease. The trickiest part is keeping the viscosity down so you can pump it to the engine, but there's plenty of kits out there with in tank heaters for colder regions.

Re:Why does my car smell like french fries... (3, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006450)

It's incredibly easy to convert an old VW diesel to run on kitchen grease. The trickiest part is keeping the viscosity down so you can pump it to the engine, but there's plenty of kits out there with in tank heaters for colder regions.

Mechanic on my two previous cars was running a Mercedes diesel on bio fuel. He had some setup outside his house, which processed cooking oil into fuel. Initially he had no trouble finding local restaurants who were happy to give away their used oil (rather than pay for disposal.) Not so available anymore, people are willing to pay for it now.

In other news [chicagotribune.com], there's a flight recently by a jet powered by biofuel - mostly for promotional reasons as the jet requirement came in at about g/$17 as opposed to g/$3 for petrol jet fuel.

Re:Why does my car smell like french fries... (1)

haaz (3346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008908)

From what i understand, this is good only for older (1980s) VW/Benz diesels. I saw a picture of what happen to a guy's later-1990s VW TDi that he tried to run on grease. It made the turbo cylinder look like it was in a warzone. VW's official line is that they can take up to 5% biodiesel -- which is very different from grease/WVO/SVO. I have an '06 that ran like a dream on biodiesel, but it's become hard to get in reliable quantity for me.

Not just for fuel in California (2)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006156)

Disturbing story on the BBC [bbc.co.uk], a while back, regarding recovered grease from disposal, grease traps, drains, etc. being recycled into packaged cooking oil in China. Yum.

Where's there's opportunity, all that's needed is people with the required ethics.

Re:Not just for fuel in California (2)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006676)

Just one more reason to never eat anything labeled "Made in China" or "Made in PRC".

Re:Not just for fuel in California (1)

Hamsterdan (815291) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007192)

So basically never buy about 95% of stuff :p

Re:Not just for fuel in California (4, Informative)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007258)

Most of our manufactured crap comes from there, but (aside from apple juice) our food supply is not completely overrun yet. Trader Joe's completely avoids Chinese suppliers.

Re:Not just for fuel in California (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007996)

aside from apple juice

I have no troubles finding a "Made in USA" apple juice in my local Safeway so far - e.g. this [amazon.com]. Am I missing something?

Re:Not just for fuel in California (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008204)

aside from apple juice

I have no troubles finding a "Made in USA" apple juice in my local Safeway so far - e.g. this [amazon.com]. Am I missing something?

The little label that says 'Concentrate from China' perhaps? At least that's what the one in my fridge says on the neck.

Re:Not just for fuel in California (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38008902)

China has cornered the market on vitamin c, so you can't trust any juice anymore...

Re:Not just for fuel in California (1)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007270)

>>So basically never buy about 95% of stuff :p

Assuming you're not eating your toys, we here in America still actually grow a fair chunk of what we eat.

Convicted of stealing garbage from restaurants (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006158)

What an embarrassing thing to have to admit to your cell mates...

And creating a nuisance (5, Funny)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006210)

What an embarrassing thing to have to admit to your cell mates...

He said, "What were you arrested for, kid?"

And I said, "Stealing garbage." And they all moved away from me on the bench there, and the hairy eyeball and all kinds of mean nasty things, till I said, "And creating a nuisance."

And they all came back, shook my hand, and we had a great time on the bench, talkin about crime, mother stabbing, father raping, all kinds of groovy things that we was talking about on the bench.

Alice's restaurant? (1)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006610)

What an embarrassing thing to have to admit to your cell mates...

He said, "What were you arrested for, kid?"

And I said, "Stealing garbage." And they all moved away from me on the bench there, and the hairy eyeball and all kinds of mean nasty things, till I said, "And creating a nuisance."

And they all came back, shook my hand, and we had a great time on the bench, talkin about crime, mother stabbing, father raping, all kinds of groovy things that we was talking about on the bench.

Was the grease stolen from Alice's restaurant, noting that Alice's Restaurant is not the actual name of the restaurant?

Re:Alice's restaurant? (4, Insightful)

budgenator (254554) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007592)

Why would you steal from Alice's restaurant when you can get anything you want there?

Re:And creating a nuisance (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006688)

Ahh, the crowd from the Group W bench...how I miss them...

If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaurant (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006218)

...Then how come the removal is classified as theft? The restaurant shows no loss (in fact it's a net gain for them as they would otherwise have to pay for disposal, per EA regulations), and the "thieves" are merely showing initiative per yet more EA regulations on RECYCLING.

Here's my theory: certain people are pissed because they're not getting their cut (the Government for fuel tax revenue, the oil companies for diesel sales (boo bloody hoo, they're getting pissy because out of their TRILLION DOLLAR INDUSTRY they're losing out on two or three dozen tankfuls of diesel a YEAR!))... they should show proper initiative and ask the geniuses how they do it so efficiently instead of blowing millions in wasteful litigation!

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006250)

Nonsense. The restaurant could have sold it at a profit. If I have some scrap metal in my garage that I plan on selling over at Crazy Ray's Junkyard, and someone steals it, it's still theft even though it was useless to me directly.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (3, Interesting)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006342)

FTFS: it's not the restaurants that are reporting this, it's a Government Agency. If they were so hot on biodiesel as an alternative to drill diesel they'd be making it illegal to make your own and making nightly runs between restaurants and large privately owned refineries (with such original names as "Shell", "Halliburton", "BP", Texaco"...) and selling the stuff at the same price as regular. The problem for them is it's insanely easy (and relatively inexpensive) to make your own diesel, it'd be as difficult to regulate as alcohol (see: prohibition) and would likely as not spawn an underworld of diesel bootleggers armed with Thompsonsmaybe.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

Ichijo (607641) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006536)

If the government didn't depend so much on fuel taxes, they wouldn't care so much about bootlegging.

A mileage-based tax based on the weight of the vehicle would also solve the problem that a 2-ton car causes 16 times [pavementinteractive.org] as much road wear per mile as a 1-ton car, but only pays about twice as much in fuel taxes.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007374)

A mileage-based tax

I'm pretty sure I could disconnect my odometer.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007794)

The current plans in some places is to use a GPS logger.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008114)

So I make my engine spark plugs just a weee bit loose to make a nice interfering spark gap emitter.

Or just make the entire car a faraday cage.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (3, Informative)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006590)

FTFS: it's not the restaurants that are reporting this, it's a Government Agency

Yes the issue of a broad theft problem is being reported by a GA, and the GA is talking about taking action, but the GA wouldn't know about the problem unless it was reported by the independent restaurants first.

The implication that the restaurants don't care, only the government and its oil lobbyists care, is completely unfounded.

Oh, and also wrong according to TFA:

NPR blogger Nancy Shute reports on how restaurants and recyclers are now putting barrels of so-called yellow grease under lock and key because, as the National Renderers Association told her, it has become "the new copper."

I guess you were under the impression that only the government and the thieves, not the restaurants, knew that IKG could be valuable?

Theft as public sevice? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006260)

Mod parent up. Came here to say the same thing, just without the conspiracy theory =)

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (3, Insightful)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006284)

Have the restaurants thrown the grease away, or just put it in storage tanks? Maybe the restaurant contracts with legitimate biodiesel producers and they sell or get free removal of the grease by the production company, who then uses it to make biofuel? What you are saying is like saying "going into foreclosed houses and taking the copper wiring/piping out and selling it isn't stealing, because no one is using the house and banks are evil!" It is both morally and legally wrong.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006286)

Probably because trespassing and breaking and entering are involved, and because the restaurants are still on the hook if some chucklefuck spills fifty gallons of the stuff on the road during their getaway.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006294)

Restaurants sell it to companies that make pet food. I actually have known of people who were "grease pirates" that went around with an old pump truck stealing grease. The figure I recall was that they were making around $US 1500 a load (this was ~15 years ago).

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (2)

pclminion (145572) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006318)

How do you know the restaurant wasn't going to sell the grease to a legitimate biofuel maker? Just because it's sitting outside in a tank doesn't make it "fair game." A friend of mine collects fryer grease, purifies it, and sells it to larger biofuels companies. He PAYS for the grease when he picks it up from the restaurants. Taking it without paying is fucking theft.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006414)

madness. He should *charge* the restaurant a small amount to take it away for recycling.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

pclminion (145572) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006580)

madness. He should *charge* the restaurant a small amount to take it away for recycling.

That doesn't work when there's someone in the area who is willing to pay for it. This isn't hypothetical, people do pay for it.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006616)

If a restaurant has a choice between you requiring them to pay for grease removal, and a rival company paying them for the grease, I'm betting that they will choose the more profitable option every time.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (2)

p0p0 (1841106) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006320)

This thing is mine. It is not yours. You have taken it from me. Theft! It's not that bloody difficult. We're not talking about online piracy. This concept has been pretty cut and dry for thousands of years.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38007418)

You're taking someone else's product/intellectual property with online (or offline) piracy too.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007830)

Nope, you still have it. Besides, I didn't take it, some nice person shared it with me.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006322)

Darling International (http://www.darlingii.com/) collects IKG from restaurants and processes it for use as animal feed as well as for other uses. Depending on the market rate, they either pay for the privilege or get paid to haul away waste. Once the oil hits their receptacles, it's their property. It's not a conspiracy, it's theft.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006434)

Even garbage is private property.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

wmbetts (1306001) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006670)

In most places it's not. I can legally go riffle through your garbage once you put it out for collection. Private business on the other hand you might not be able too. I'm not sure exactly what makes it legal for someone to riffle through my garbage, but not theirs (if that is the case).

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38007204)

Tell that to various municipalities in the San Francisco Bay Area. Once a garbage and/or recycling bin is placed at the curb, the respective city claims ownership. Anyone riffling through and removing items could be charged with theft.

What I want to know is if I roll the recycling bin out to the curb and later roll it back to the house before pickup, am I stealing?

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

bws111 (1216812) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008550)

Wrong. I think you are confusing two things. Once you put your garbage out for collection it is no longer considered private, so someone can indeed look through it. However, it is still either yours or the collection companies property, and taking it without permission is theft.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

wmbetts (1306001) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008754)

No, I'm not wrong. In several places (most) it's considered abandoned property once it's set outside for the trash collectors to pick it up.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

RazorSharp (1418697) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006532)

Heh, next thing you know the cops are going to crack down on bums for dumpster diving.

And to all those who have responded to your post with "what if the restaurants sell this stuff?" - they're wrong. The restaurants, like you said, pay to have it removed.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006598)

The restaurants sell the used oil to legitimate companies that collect it. It has been this way since 1979 that I personally know of. Stealing is theft.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006896)

If it was MY grease- and it was suddenly of some value, I'd happily SELL it to someone. I'd be pissed if someone was stealing something of mine.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

mspohr (589790) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007238)

I think it's the "cooking oil recyclers" who are complaining. Most restaurants have to pay someone to take away the grease. They grease haulers then resell the grease and they get upset when somebody steals "their" grease.

I don't know how the law would apply here (IANAL) but if you put out trash for collection, you give up rights to it. Could be the same for grease put out for collection or it might be different.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007930)

The grease isn't put out, it's in a container owned by the rendering company leased to the restaurant on the restaurant's premises.

Re:If it's IKG and therefore no use to the restaur (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007804)

Once the grease is put in the render's container, it's their property and they will defend it; the restaurant that generated the waste grease probably doesn't care. It's the grease rendering company that being stolen from, not the restaurant.

This has been happening for years (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006242)

About seven years ago, I started making biodiesel for my commuter car, a 1984 Mercedes-Benz 300SD that I purchased for that purpose. It's not difficult to do, and when diesel fuel was costing $5/gal, I was paying about $1/gal plus my time to produce fuel that was functionally equivalent. While I got all of my IKG from local Chinese restaurants that agreed to let me take it, the online community stressed to people that IKG was the property of the collection company the moment it went into their dumpsters and that taking it was theft. It didn't seem to happen all that much back then, and competition for the IKG wasn't very high.

I stopped making the fuel about three years ago because my daily drive went from 80 miles to 16, and my diesel car died (not related to the fuel used). I now support a municipal government, and the police have mentioned that they've seen instances of IKG theft being reported locally.

(On a related note, anyone want to buy an appleseed biodiesel processor?)

Sounds like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006332)

...they were pretty SLICK.

Yeaaaaaaaah!

This is old news (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006334)

Back when I was making my own fuel out of WVO (thats Waste Vegetable Oil, IKG is a new term to me), stores would GIVE US their grease for free. They were paying Rendering farms to haul it off for them. To be turned into dog food usually.

Then biofuel got big, and the renderers started to actually pay a small amount for the oil that they use to get paid to take.

Then, in CA, they got a law passed that said if you haul used veggie oil, you have to have a business license and insurance. It was a scare tactic to get the small time home brewer out of the loop, so that the renderers wouldnt have to compete with home brewers. They even got it classified as a hazardous product!

By the way, the process of turning grease into biofuel is the same as turning it into soap (aka Fight Club), its just a different ratio of the same chemicals. Some Methanol, and some Caustic lye or caustic soda, depending on what your source oil is. Shake and serve!

Re:This is old news (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007226)

By the way, the process of turning grease into biofuel is the same as turning it into soap (aka Fight Club), its just a different ratio of the same chemicals. Some Methanol, and some Caustic lye or caustic soda, depending on what your source oil is. Shake and serve!

More precisely, each is a byproduct of the process for making the other, so you get some of both no matter what.

Indie Bands (1)

Hotweed Music (2017854) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006366)

A lot of indie "hipster" bands have biodiesel vans for touring.

The smart ones arrange in advance to pick up some from restaurants, since it's not really in the restaurant's best interest to sell the stuff.

Some band called OFF! got busted for it a couple months ago. http://www.punknews.org/article/42020 [punknews.org]

Apparently no one here has worked in a restaurant (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006382)

Long before kitchen grease was used for biofuel, it was and still is used to make soap.
35 years ago when I started working in the restaurant business, the grease had always
been collected in a barrel out back when it was time to change the fryers. and about once
a month a company would collect the contents of the barrel to go towards the production of soap.
Been that way for the last 35 years.

Re:Apparently no one here has worked in a restaura (1)

deinol (210478) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006600)

Long before kitchen grease was used for biofuel, it was and still is used to make soap.
35 years ago when I started working in the restaurant business, the grease had always
been collected in a barrel out back when it was time to change the fryers. and about once
a month a company would collect the contents of the barrel to go towards the production of soap.
Been that way for the last 35 years.

When I first read the above, I was horrified. Then I realized that it actually said soap, not soup like my mind substituted.

Greasy (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006430)

"Och! Me retirement grease!"

Re:Greasy (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38006498)

Homer: Uhh, we're new foreign exchange students from ... uh, um ... Scotland!
Willie: Saints be praised, *I'M* from Scotland! Where do ya hail from?
Homer: Uh ... North ... Kilttown.
Willie: No foolin'! *I'M* from North Kilttown! Do you know Angus McLeod?
Homer: Wait a minute! There's no Angus McLeod in North Kilttown! Why, you're not from Scotland at all!

I know one of these (1)

RazorSharp (1418697) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006464)

I know a guy who has a VW TDI converted into a grease engine. He's banned from every Wal-Mart in America because he worked out some arrangement with the McDonald's manager (inside the Wal-Mart) to get enough old vegetable oil to keep his car on the road. Some security guard at Wal-Mart saw him taking the oil out of the waste container in the back and disapproved. I think the McDonald's manager got in trouble for it as well.

Now I think he gets his fuel from Rallys or Wendy's or some place like that. But he doesn't really steal it because he asks for it, first. The companies pay to have the stuff disposed of so usually the managers usually don't mind.

I have a TDI for my winter car (summer car is a mid-engine, rwd), but I haven't converted it because 1) filtering the IKG is a pain in the ass 2) it makes your car perpetually smell like fast food 3) it can be high maintenance and 4) driving a diesel around is cheap as hell anyway (40-45mpg on a 15 yr old car!).

Re:I know one of these (1)

mmcuh (1088773) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006994)

it makes your car perpetually smell like fast food

How is that worse than smelling like diesel?

Re:I know one of these (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007160)

it makes your car perpetually smell like fast food

How is that worse than smelling like diesel?

Diesel fries . . . yum.

They would be caught by insanely cackling "We're green."

Re:I know one of these (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007326)

[Running WVO in your VW TDI] can be high maintenance

Yeah, it can gum up your injection system and (potentially) destroy your engine.

Biodiesel, on the other hand, is a lot safer, and the only "conversion" you need to do is replace your rubber fuel-return hoses with Viton (which costs about $10 and takes 5 minutes).

(I drive a TDI too, and run commercially-made biodiesel in it.)

Re:I know one of these (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008022)

FWIW, Volkswagen claims in the user manual for my diesel car (Jetta SportWagen TDI) that only fuel blends of up to 5% biodiesel are safe to run. Is that BS, or is there something about it?

Re:I know one of these (1)

haaz (3346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008940)

i have an '06 TDi, and its manual says 5% as well. Thing is, the Pump Düße TDis are very different beasts from the newer CRD TDis with the exhaust treatment. I don't know what putting more than 5% through that would do, if it would cause more of the urea compounds to be used, etc. My father-in-law used 5% bio in his Golf TDi and never had a problem with it. Just change the oil religiously and your fuel filters once a year (in October) and yours should run like a dream. (Assuming the doors open...)

Re:I know one of these (1)

GungaDan (195739) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007386)

A TDI will not last long on WVO. Biodiesel? Fine. Mostly. But WVO eats VW high pressure injection pumps for breakfast, and engines for lunch. Old Mercedes are much better for WVO. Those things will run on anything.

All reverse in Argentina (3, Insightful)

jago25_98 (566531) | more than 2 years ago | (#38006792)

People have varying views of rubbish disposal.

In Argentina before they had the crash that the west is about to have rubbish was viewed this way.
But after the 2002 financial crash so many people were destitute that an army of people was born and found searching the dustbins primarily for cardboard.

Now the crash is past this group of people seemingly come out of nowhere at night and clean up the streets. Now people just through rubbish out wherever and there is hardly any governement provided collection. Compare this with western Europe where everything is a cost and a problem to dispose of, so much that people dump it anywhere.

I always suggest working with the market rather than fighting against it. If there is a problem then attempt to steer the market flow rather than trying to make water go uphill.

In this example people who wish to securely transfer ownership to a disposal company should state thier intentions and those collecting otherwise protected by default.

This is the kind of lesson that this economic disaster will tell whether we like it or not.

Re:All reverse in Argentina (2)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007010)

On a related note: National Geographic did a show about Rio residents (I think it was Rio, ICBW) who live and work on the municipal dump which is easily the size of the city itself and right next door. They survive by recycling practically everything from rags to plastics to food (growing their own on composting heaps), many do well enough to provide for their families.

Re:All reverse in Argentina (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007408)

I think you might have found a solution for Detroit.

Re:All reverse in Argentina (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38008336)

Ferment the trash to biomethane rocket fuel to get the nukes *to* orbit???

Re:All reverse in Argentina (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007946)

Trust National Geographic. They are your friend. They never have any political objectives they wish to achieve, and their shows are always totally objective, with an equal split between right and left opinions. Haha, just joking, and you actually believed them?

Re:All reverse in Argentina (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38007606)

You're missing one important point; the restaurants sell their grease, so the 'free cleanup' is not a benefit for the restaurants... Pure theft more like it.

Re:All reverse in Argentina (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008554)

My question would be what happens to the rubish AFTER these people have removed it from the streets have removed anything they can recycle? Does it end up in the air as fumes from a crude incinerator or precious metal extraction furnace? does it end up buried in crude landfill with no protection against leaching? does it end up just dumped in the countryside somwhere?

Oblig. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38007024)

Ach! My retirement grease! No! You thievin' grease bandits! I'll kill ya!

New trend... (3, Interesting)

jakartus (1287248) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007316)

I work in a restaurant (2)

SilentDissonance (516202) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007564)

I work in a restaurant. I owned one for a while, too. I can tell you, there are those that want the stuff. The company I had taking mine away, at first, charged me to do so. Another company approached and said they'd charge less, they got into a bidding war with each other. Ended up having it done for free. At the time, I believe it was going into C4 production. Now, at the restaurant I work at, the gentlemen who delivers our mushrooms takes it, and actually PAYS us for it (in the form of an extra box of mushrooms; product we'd use anyway). They use it to keep their 'cave' system at ideal temps, we get free product and free removal of something we have no use for. Win/Win.

That's right, folks: grease is fuel! (1)

inglorion_on_the_net (1965514) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007626)

I guess that when people are stealing the stuff, that makes it officially valuable. To borrow an old meme: will 2011 be the year of biofuels in the fuel tank?

Biofuel Thieves? (5, Interesting)

mpaladini (2504322) | more than 2 years ago | (#38007948)

I was making Biodiesel back in 1996 when Josh Tickell was driving his Veggie Van across the country making big news. Frankly that was the death knell for us as individuals who made their own BioDiesel. I went for years without ever buying a bit of fuel for my car. All the restaraunt folks called me MacGyver and marvelled at my Diesel Mercedes that smelled like french fries. Once BioDiesel caught on as a commercial idea, the recyclers that used to charge the restaraunts for taking the grease started paying for it and locking the restaraunts into "Contracts", and putting locks on the grease containers. It is now a crime to take any grease from a "Griffin Industries" grease tank (the major recycler here in Tennessee), and because of the contracts, the restaraunt can't even give it to you before they put it in the tanks. The contracts are worded such that once the grease comes out of the fryer, it is the property of the recycler. Once something becomes commercially viable, the individual is screwed. I ended up selling my fuel proccessor and getting out of it because I couldn't get any waste oil/grease. The recyclers pay way more for it in order to discourage us from buying it directly from the restaraunts, at least they did back when I was doing it. It may be different now that have run us all out of making our own fuel. In addition, the price of the chemicals went through the roof as well so now your cheaper off to buy dino-diesel, at least if you were doing it for cost reasons. Back in the 90's I was making a 50 gallon batch of BioDiesel for about 50 cents a gallon. Whats happening now I suppose is that some of my brethren are taking it from the grease tanks at restaraunts. Of course now the recyclers can burn you at the stake for that since they can nail you for larceny, transporting biowaste, etc. And they will nail every one they catch to the wall just to make an example of them because they know that there is a lot of us out there. I saw the writing on the wall and refocused my energies towards electric vehicles, solar, geothermal etc. At thats not against the law... Yet....

Re:Biofuel Thieves? (2)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008424)

re: your last point.

No, solar isn't illegal yet, but what it is, is prohibitively expensive. At current prices for panels against wholesale per-kWH line energy prices, a grid-feeding solar setup (3-5kW) runs around the £8k-£14k [solarguide.co.uk] mark depending on the size of the installation, and you can only get it if you own your home - renters need not apply. At that rate it would take anything up to 25 years to pay for itself providing it performs as expected, in an ideal world. In practical terms this equates to more like 50y ROI. There are Government subsidies for getting SPV and STA (Solar Thermal Arrays) but applying for these seems to involve live animal sacrifices.

For me, it suffices that I have a solar plant charging batteries for small devices such as notebooks, flashlights, mp3 players, etc., with a gel acid pile for night storage.

FWIW, the UK Government's "Feed In Tariff" is a blatant encouragement for homeowners to generate their own electricity. My question is; that being the case, why can't I generate my power using RITEG [wikipedia.org]?

Welcome to 10 years ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38008040)

I remember reading about this in the papers...

north of the border... (0)

cfriedt (1189527) | more than 2 years ago | (#38008676)

In Canada, restaurants pay people to take this away, and they give it to people who will use it for biofuel :P
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