Photo by GermanGirl.
When most people think of the junk that ends up in a landfill, it is not uncommon to think of things like old televisions or worn out sofas. However, many do not realize that Fruit and Vegetable Waste actually accounts for a large percentage of what is in our landfills.
Fruit and Vegetable waste is commonly disposed of in landfills, because this is the easiest way of dealing with it. Finding a way to recycle and reuse this type of waste is imperative to cleaning up the environment and can actually have a number of important uses. One of the most exciting uses for fruit and vegetable waste is in the creation of bio-diesel.
Advantages of Bio-Diesel
Bio-Diesel offers several very important advantages over traditional petroleum-based diesel.
One of the most exciting aspects of using bio-diesel as an alternative energy source is that it is made from renewable resources that can be grown anywhere. This means that countries will be able to grow their own diesel and will no longer be forced to rely on oil producing countries.
In addition to helping to reduce dependence on foreign oil, bio-diesel has also been shown to offer lower emissions of carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons than petroleum based products. It is also non-toxic and biodegradable, unlike petroleum based diesels.
Problems with Manufacturing Bio-Diesel
While Bio-Diesel has a great number of advantages, it has come under criticism by some because manufacturing bio-diesel could potentially divert food products, like corn, from the Worlds food supply.
Even though the validity of this argument is highly debated, it does present an interesting problem: If farmers were able to make much more money growing plants used to create bio-diesel the amount of food produced could be dramatically affected.
Overcoming the Controversies of Bio-Diesel Production
In large part, the problem of food supply versus bio-diesel manufacturing could be overcome by reusing fruit and vegetable oil. these byproducts would otherwise end up in a landfill, but can be used to produce low cost bio-diesel.
One of the most low cost means of creating bio-diesel is by using used cooking oil and in fact there are several companies in the United States that do just this. Currently, however, the collection of these types of materials is rather inadequate and mostly limited to the restaurant industry.
In order to help reduce the cost of bio-diesel and increase its production, everyone must get involved. This means collecting lard, tallow, used vegetable oils, and other potential sources of bio-diesel not only from restaurants, but also from individuals.
Aside from used cooking oils and other cooking materials, there are a number of other potential sources that could be used to make bio-diesel.
For example, when edible oils are created, such as olive oil or cooking oil, soapstock is created as a byproduct. The soapstock is often simply discarded by manufacturers, but because it contains large amounts of fatty acids, it can be used as a low cost source of bio-diesel.
Soapstock is created by industries using soybeans, hazelnuts, olives, coconuts, sunflowers, and many other types of fruits and vegetables. There are many industries all over the world that end up with soapstock as a byproduct of production.
Creating a Greener Tomorrow
Using Bio-Diesel could not only help reduce green house gases, lower fuel costs, and reduce dependency on foreign oil, but it could also help us make better use of our landfills.
Every year, millions of tons of fruit and vegetable waste ends up in our landfills, which could have otherwise been used to create bio-diesel. This not only helps create low cost bio-diesel, but also allows us to avoid taking food off of peoples plates in an effort to manufacture bio-diesel.
About the Author
Tiger is an established writer that runs and maintains several sites that deal with medical issues. At liftchairguide.net, Tiger writes about topics that relate to senior health, including arthritis, Alzheimer’s, Medicare, and lift chairs. Lift Chairs are a type of standing aid that look like recliners, but help the senior to stand without assistance.
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