[permaculture] Used cooking oil vehicles? svo pollution?

Brooks Miller brooks.devin at gmail.com
Wed Mar 12 12:06:23 EDT 2008

ok, so i googled svo emissions...

the first several sites talked about how svo's emissions were comparable to
those of biodiesel, lower than dino diesel (petro).  the link you sent (an
undergrad student project?) doesn't have any info on how the conversion was
done, what temperature the oil was heated to, or how the measurements were
taken.  i am very interested in any hard evidence we can find, but as far as
i can tell i don't see any clear conclusions as you say.

"Riding your bike is a far better solution.  That said it is indeed a
reasonable transitional fuel and a good use of waste oil"

my point of biofuels not being the answer i think is valid.  a growth
economy is not sustainable, so fueling it with biofuels is not any kind of
answer.  there are hundreds of questions you could ask to evaluate
sustainable biofuels production - is it a waste product, how much energy is
used in its production, etc.  but i think the number one issue is our
philosophy on transportation and how convenient it should be.

in referring to alternative crops for ethanol production, i assume you're
referring to small scale farmstead production?   the reason we use grain for
ethanol on a large scale has nothing to do with efficiency, i think you'll
agree (a dumb idea for sure), but with already-existing infrastructure and
lobbying for corn.  for whom is distiller's mash a "higher quality food?"

as far as powering row crop production, you will be hard-pressed to defeat
the biological efficiency of the horse, mule, or oxen team, which negates
the need for ethanol or biodiesel as agricultural fuel.  often draft
animals, like other livestock, make better use of forage than we ever could
in production.  but without the skills or knowledge of draft power, i think
SVO is an excellent use of a current waste product, and good car/tractor


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