Alternative Energy

Alternative Energy

Alternative energy news, and information about renewable energy technologies.

Nov 26

Biodiesel Rental Cars from Bio-Beetle

Posted in Biodiesel Fuel | Transportation

Bio-Beetle Would you believe there exists a company that offers rental cars which are entirely powered by biodiesel? In support of their mission statement to be the “greenest” and “best” rental car company on the planet,

Bio-Beetle

Eco Rental Cars began their environmentally conscious business endeavor in 2003 with only a single car. The company was not, and still isn’t, supported by a major car manufacturer. Powered by biodiesel, each Bio-Beetle has been purchased and developed individually by the founders as funds allow. The founders of Bio-Beetle believed their business venture was a great way to demonstrate environmental consciousness and have, therefore, slowly built the foundation for the only rental car company of its kind available.


For the unacquainted, biodiesel is a clean-burning fuel that is made from 100% renewable sources. It can be used in place of standard diesel fuel as well, which as we know is made from fossil fuels and is nonrenewable. In reality, most items that call for regular diesel fuel, such as vehicles and generators, can utilize this environmentally friendly alternative. In the case of Bio-Beetle, the company utilizes 100% vegetable-oil-based biodiesel. In fact, most of the biodiesel is actually made from used cooking oil.

The process for utilizing used cooking oil to power a vehicle is quite simple. Restaurants that cook fried foods like French Fries or Fried Chicken normally operate deep fat fryers. When it is time to change the oil in these fryers, it is generally done so by a pumping company contracted by the restaurant for such purposes. The used cooking oil that is collected from the process can then be brought by the pumping company to a biodiesel processor. Once at the processor the oil is filtered and then put through a process known as Transesterification. It is a process by which the vegetable oil is mixed with an alcohol (typically methanol) and a catalyst (lye) to separate and create two important commodities: biodiesel (also known as methyl esters) and glycerin (the common ingredient in soap).

The result of this process is extremely friendly to environment, and it supports the zero-waste philosophy of the Bio-Beetle company. Yet in addition to utilizing used cooking oil, Bio-Beetle Eco Rental Cars takes it one step further, employing earth friendly coolants, synthetic engine oil and non toxic cleaners as well. And the idea is spreading, at least in terms of the company’s influence: in 2006 Bio-Beetle expanded its business beyond Maui, Hawaii and into Los Angeles, California to serve the LAX airport and vicinity. Although it may be small steps at first, Bio-Beetle is definitely showing the nation what measures it can take to help protect the planet today.

http://www.bio-beetle.com/

  • Jason

    I think this is a great idea. There should be more companies like this. I just don’t understand why there isn’t a major car company interested in funding this project.

  • Jillerd

    It is a good idea exceot oil companies would never allow it to happen because then they would be out of business.

  • Just Watching

    Bio fuel is another path to world starvation!
    We don’t have enough water to grow the added crops for all the bio fuel needed.

  • GF

    >Bio fuel is another path to world starvation!
    >We don’t have enough water to grow the added crops for >all the bio fuel needed.

    Your statment is valid if you talk about bioethanol. Btw, using E85 in current US gasoline-based vehicles is total insanity to me anyway – look at moronic E85 H2 Hummer.

    However, you’d be totally wrong if talking about biodiesel and other biofuels from algae.

    The most obvious path for biggest oil-saving US still resists would be switching a big percentage of US cars to diesel (at least SUVs and other big vehicles). Just look at the European market and compare the mileage. This would help immensely even if you start with petro-based diesel and biodiesel would be just a minor next step.

  • http://www.unparalled60.com unparalled60

    With the use of biodiesel, the smoke generated becomes very clean instead of the traditional diesel. And thus, can make our car last longer. So what would you prefer?

  • Clare Jane Mcvety

    A fan is situated under the bonnet of the car which generates power. This is then stored in a battery. The car has to be moving to work. So what will happen if the car runs out of power? The wind will go through the grill and then start the fan which creates power that will be stored in the battery for later use. Also the power, that the brakes create when used, will power to the battery. The car has dynamos in the wheels to work the lights like the old bicycles used to have.

    Thank you
    Clare Mcvety


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