A biodiesel fuel tank is opening tomorrow for use by the public and the Pittsburgh Regional Food Bank, and the tank is going to be the first of its kind in the region.
Biodiesel, of course, is the term for an alternative fuel produced from renewable resources like plant oils and animal fats that is mixed with diesel fuel.
Depending on the blend ratio, it can reduce emissions by up to 60 and 80 percent. This 5,000 gallon tank, located at the Greater Pittsburgh Food Bank in the Duquesne neighborhood, will be above ground, and will be able to produce different levels of blending on the spot. These levels are important because the diesel fuel rates must be at a higher level in cold weather to prevent damage to an engine.
Ryan Walsh, Executive Director of Pittsburgh Region Clean Cities, says there are more benefits than just having better emission rates. Using biodiesel during a vehicle’s lifetime can also extend its running lifetime by keeping the engine itself cleaner. But there’s more.
“It’s an American-produced fuel, and it really reduces our dependence, little by little, on foreign petroleum,” he says.
Walsh says two additional tanks will begin operations within the next year. One at the Construction Junction in Point Breeze, the other serving Transportation Solutions in Uptown.