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BioDiesel Plant

BioDieselOn February 21st Bahamas Waste Ltd. officially opened its $1,000,000 biodiesel facility, an investment that will allow for the manufacturing of up to one million gallons of waste cooking oil into biodiesel each year.  Waste cooking oil is collected from restaurants in Nassau such as McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC, and Wendy’s is processed and converted on site and used to fuel Bahamas Waste trucks and other stationary equipment.  Currently four trucks are using a 50:50 blend of biodiesel to petroleum diesel; the company hopes to eventually run the entire fleet of 50 vehicles off of 100% biodiesel as production increases.

The development of this facility has been a long-term project, with partners in The Bahamas and United States assisting with planning and implementation.  Cape Systems, Ltd., a for-profit subsidiary of the Cape Eleuthera Island School, consulted on the project over the past five years.  The planning and construction of the facility was done in conjunction with Wisconsin Biofuels, LLC.  While the initial production of biodiesel was delayed until December 2010 due to lower quality cooking oil, the plant is now set to produce over 1,000 gallons per day when running at full capacity.
“Our latest initiative represents a bold and definite step by Bahamas Waste to move us toward a greater use of renewable energy resources, significantly reducing the amount of waste oil that finds its way back into the environment and reduce the amount of carbon dioxide release into the environment,” said Francisco De Cardenas, Managing Director of Bahamas Waste.

BIOSeveral distinguished guests attended the ribbon cutting ceremony including The Hon. Earl Deveaux, Minister of Environment and The Hon. Phenton Neymour, Minister of State for the Environment from the government of The Bahamas.  Chris Maxey, director of the Cape Eleuthera Foundation and head of The Island School also attended with members of the Cape Systems team that consulted on the project were; Graham Siener, Geoff Walton, and Jack Kenworthy.  Chris Maxey, Bahamas Environmental Steward Scholar (BESS) Garneisha Pinder, and current Deep Creek Middle School (DCMS) student Moesha Leary accepted a check for $0.25, in recognition of Bahamas Waste’s agreement to donate a quarter from every gallon of biodiesel produced to fund scholarships for BESS and DCMS student.

How Is Bio-Diesel Fuel Made?

Biodiesel is a fuel that is made from soy beans, or waste vegetable oil [cooking oil). It can be used in place of petroleum diesel fuel for vehicles. Unlike petroleum diesel, biodiesel is a renewable resource, and it creates less pollution than petroleum diesel. It is a green fuel, does not contribute to the carbon dioxide (C02) burden and produces drastically reduced engine emissions. it is non­toxic and biodegradable, Biodiesel has a much higher lubrŕeity than petroleum diesel and its use can prolong engine life. Biodiesel fuel is made from oils or fats, which are both hydrocarbons, most commonly soybean oil. These hydrocarbons are filtered, and then mixed with an alcohol, which is usually methanol, and a catalyst (sodium or potassium hydroxide). The major products of this reaction are the biodiesel fuel, which is an ester, and glycerol, which has commercial uses, such as in cosmetics.

How Is Bio-Diesel Labeled?

Biodiesel is designated by the letter B and number representing the percent of the fuel that is biodiesel. The rest of the fuel is petroleum diesel. For example, a mixture of 20% biodiesel and 80% petroleum diesel would be labeled b20. The ratio of biodiesel to petroleum diesel is commonly used.

Advantages of Bio-Diesel Fuel

Biodiesel fuel is a renewable energy source that can be made from soy beans grown for fuel, or from cooking oil recycled from restaurant. This means it is a renewable resource unlike petroleum-based diesel. Biodiesel is less polluting than petroleum diesel. Compared to petroleum diesel, biodiesel produces less soot (particulate matter), carbon monoxide, unburned hydrocarbons, and sulfur dioxide.

Disadvantages Of Bio-Diesel Fuel?

Biodiesel cleans the dirt from the engine. This dirt then collects in the fuel filter, which can clog it. Clogging occurs most often when biodiesel is first used after a period of operation with petroleum diesel, so filters should be changed after the first several hours of biodiesel use.


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