ITD takes lead in using biodiesel fuel, converts fuel stations to B20
Idahoans use approximately 360 million gallons of petroleum diesel every year. If recycled clean burning biodiesel were substituted, the need for imported crude oil would drop by 54 million gallons per year.
And that is just in Idaho.
ITD recognizes these economic and environmental benefits of biodiesel fuel and recently converted all of its diesel-fueled vehicle stations in the Treasure Valley to B20 Biodiesel a blend of 20 percent bio-fuel and 80 percent petroleum diesel.
The first 6,000 gallons of the new product were delivered to District 3s Chinden Boulevard fueling station Sept. 15.
Theres a little different smell around here now, said District 3 Maintenance Engineer Dick Powell. A little bit like French fry oil kind of makes you hungry.
The biofuel portion of the mixture is typically produced from agricultural products such as soybeans, rapeseed and mustard seed, or from cooking oil waste and other organic byproducts. It has the potential to benefit Idaho farmers by allowing them to grow crops that can be converted to supplemental fuel.
Biodiesel is a safe resource. It helps reduce demands on other countries, it burns cleaner than regular diesel and it helps the air quality, Powell said.
Additionally, biodiesel can extend the life of diesel engines because it has more lubricating qualities than petroleum diesel fuel.
It kind of acts like a detergent cleans the system of sludge and varnish, Powell explained.
At the University of Idaho Biodiesel Utilization Workshop in Boise last month, ITD Director David Ekern spoke about the benefits of biodiesel fuel and ITDs commitment to its usage.
Moving toward widespread use in ITDs vehicle fleet and facilitating demonstrations and pilot programs for the public and private sectors are some of the ways ITD will promote the product in the near future.
New federal regulations also contribute to ITDs migration toward biodiesel.
The federal government's Energy Policy Act is focused
on improving fleet fuel efficiency and the use of alternative fuels
and vehicles. The policy focuses on replacing petroleum-based fuels
with alternative non-petroleum fuels by 20 percent in 2005 and 30 percent