10 Proud Years of Using Bio-Diesel
We were one of the first moving companies in the New York Metro Area to rely on bio-diesel for our trucks, and since adopting Bio-Diesel in 2006, many other business have begun using it as well. The idea to use bio-diesel started with a trip by Mark to North Carolina in 2006.
He traveled down to North Carolina to meet with his old high school friend, Tod Kershaw, who first introduced the idea to him. Tod had lived in California and pursued a post graduate degree in alternative fuels engineering and then traveled across the country with a Dodge truck he had converted to bio-diesel by switching the traditional gasoline engine with one from a 1985 diesel Mercedes. The project was a good proof of concept, but the potential of more commercial use of bio-diesel was not realized. Once Mark and Tod met, they realized that the moving industry could use this alternative fuel to great environmental and economic benefit. However, there were barriers to be overcome for the alternative fuel to fit into the tight operations of a New York City based business.
Shortly after, Mark attended a film screening of Fields of Fuel, where he met two people who played instrumental roles in helping him realize that using bio-diesel could work here. John Quadrozzi of Quadrozzi Concrete Corporation had already been using bio-diesel for his fleet of cement trucks, proving that bio-diesel use could be scaled to a commercial operation. He also met Brent Baker, a bio-diesel pioneer and owner of Tri-State Biodiesel (TSB). Mark was impressed by how TSB operated. They gather used cooking oil from local restaurants with the support of the DOE Fund. Then to turn this material into clean fuel, it’s placed in a centrifuge, which separates glycerin from the oil. That remaining glycerin is then trucked to farms to use as fertilizer, since it’s non-toxic and biodegradable. Movers, Not Shakers! has been partnered with Tri-State Biodiesel ever since.
Businesses with fleets of commercial vehicles aren’t the only ones leveraging the power of bio-diesel. The New York City government has taken steps to help New Yorkers reap the environmental benefits of using bio-diesel by offering tax refunds and passing progressive legislation. On October 18, 2016, a local law, INT 642-A, was signed to raise New York City heating oil’s standard bio-diesel component from 2% to 5% by October 2017 and to 20% by 2034. The National Bio-diesel Board estimates that the 3 percent increase is equivalent to taking 45,000 cars off the road.
Mayor de Blasio supported the law, stating that “We have set very clearly and adamantly our goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by the year 2050, and [to] have the cleanest air of any large American city by 2030… This bill will help us to achieve those goals and combat the effects of climate change.” As more political leaders and businesses take charge to inspire a more eco-friendly city, bio-diesel will certainly take a big bite out of emissions in the big apple.