Boulder Fleets to Drive on Used Cooking Oil

This is the kind of biodiesel that makes sense to us – waste cooking oil, not soybean or other virgin oil made from plants.

Bio Plant Technologies and GHP Biodiesel USA are opening a small biodiesel plant in Boulder, Colorado that can process 11.5 million gallons of used cooking oil into fuel. 

Bio Plant Technologies collects the waste cooking oil from area restaurants, which will now provide fuel for local municipal fleets.

Biodiesel used cooking oil collection

"Using local restaurants’ grease to create biodiesel for our municipal fleets ensures that the economic and environmental benefits of our business stay in the region," says Kurt Lange, CEO of Bio Plant Technologies.

"Moving up the value chain from used oil collection to an integrated energy provider is a logical strategic step in this industry," says Gregory Gettinger, CEO of GHP Biodiesel USA.

Bio Plant Technologies LLC, operating as ClearEcos, was founded five years ago "with the simple goal of improving air quality in the Front Range of Colorado," says the company. By recycling used cooking oil restaurants are preventing millions of pounds of carbon dioxide and other toxins from entering the atmosphere.

Another benefit is that when restaurants "donate" their oil (rather than send it to the garbage for a fee), ClearEcos returns the oil to the restaurant in the form of biodegradable cleaning products – a  closed loop process. 

The manufacturing plant will be 100% wind-powered, is zero waste and built with 98% recycled materials – and the collection fleet, of course, runs on waste oil biodiesel.

Germany-based GHP Biodiesel develops technology for biodiesel production that accept many different feedstocks. The focus is on decentralized, modular production.

There are other developments along these lines:

Renewable Energy Group Inc. (Nasdaq: REGI), based in Iowa, went public last year, and makes biodiesel for cars and trucks from feedstocks like animal waste fat, used cooking oil, waste corn oil and soybean oil.

In San Diego, school buses will be running partially on used cooking oil and a small biodiesel hub is opening in Portland, Oregon that’s recycling used cooking oil. There’s also an operation in Oakland, California.

Deepening drought is intensifying the conflict between crops grown for fuel versus food. The European Union  is limiting crop-based biofuels because of rising food prices worldwide. New rules limit crop-based biofuels to 5% of transport fuel through 2020.

Here in the US, as farmers race to plant crops for biofuels they are destroying what’s left of America’s native prairies.


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Comments on “Boulder Fleets to Drive on Used Cooking Oil”

  1. Dehran Duckworth

    Guys, it’s good to be concerned citizens, but one needs to be well informed as well. The concept that using soy oil drives up food prices has been disproved over and over is is just not true. Nobody is surviving off of soy oil, but the world depends on soy meal. More soy oil production means more soy meal production, and soy meal prices go down as a result;

  2. Rona Fried

    Dehran, this issue for soy oil goes beyond food prices to the land consumed for more GMO-monoculture crops, taking it out of conservation. If soy and other crops are used for fuel, the acreage devoted to “fuel” crops goes up dramatically. I would rather use waste oil for fuel, there’s a lot of it.

  3. DIA transportation

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  4. Rona Fried

    DIA, thank you!!! I hope you’re signed up to get our daily news via email or RSS and our weekly e-newsletter.


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