Allied Waste in San Mateo, Calif., announced the conversion of its 225-truck fleet to B20 biodiesel. The first 16 trucks already have hit the streets, while the rest are expected to be in use by the end of January 2008.
“Biodiesel is the best greenhouse gas mitigation strategy for heavy duty vehicles available, and this conversion will have a demonstrative, positive environmental impact in the Bay Area communities we serve,” said John Zilmer, chairman and CEO of Allied Waste, in a press release. “In addition, there are proven maintenance cost savings to biodiesel, making this both a good business decision as well as the environmentally right thing to do.”
The B20 fuel is produced by Energy Alternative Answers, Watsonville, Calif., which makes the biodiesel from recycled vegetable oil. The biodiesel is then combined with petroleum-based diesel to form B20 fuel, with the resulting composition being 20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent petroleum-based diesel. B20 biodiesel can be used in any diesel engine without making any modifications to the engine. The switch is cost neutral for Allied because of the price of B20 fuel hovering around $2.25 per gallon, which is nearly the current cost of ultra-low sulfur diesel. The only change in operations of the trucks is changing the oil filters more often. According to a press release, the move to B20 biodiesel will reduce the company's local emissions by more than 3.3 million pounds each year.
“We are pleased to partner with Allied Waste on this important environmental initiative,” said Larry Patterson, chairman of the South Bayside Waste Management Authority (SBWMA), in a press release. “This is an encouraging step toward reducing diesel fuel consumption and improving air quality in San Mateo County.” Allied Waste Services of San Mateo County provides collection, transfer, recycling and disposal services to 103,000 residential and commercial customers in 134 Peninsula communities.