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 Mahamad Rodzi Abdul Ghani
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 Corvallis Gazette Ti
 Biodiesel: In-your-face to OPEC

Jan 24 7:51 PM USA - Consumers who begrudge paying Middle East oilinterests for diesel oil and heating oil have a clean, safe and domesticalternative in biodiesel. It doesn't involve drilling. It's actuallybetter for engines, and it works in any engine that uses diesel fuel. Itburns cleanly, and it is produced from crops grown in the fields of ourMidwest.

People such as Marc Barnes, who uses biodiesel exclusively in hisPhilomath business, are concerned that the slowness with which biodieselis gaining public acceptance might be rooted in the idea that switching tobiodiesel would be tantamount to supporting some sort of liberal agenda.However, its supporters include a certain former Texas oilman who recentlywas sworn into his second term in office.

President Bush signed into law a bill that includes a two-year taxincentive on B20 biodiesel — a mixture that is only one-fifth biodieseland four-fifths diesel.

It would be even better if more people bought " and at least a few moresold " the B100 form of biodiesel, which is made primarily from soybeansor canola and palm oil. However, to get this stuff now, you have to driveto Portland and Eugene.

Those who sell fuel are concerned that if they dedicate a pump to it, theywill lose money on regular diesel sales. Some people may be put off by thename, thinking it is some sort of leftist-supported plot to undermine theeconomy.

Nothing could be further from the truth. More than its benefit as a"green" product, the best part of biodiesel is that its use instantlymakes its user energy independent from OPEC.

True, it is expensive. Prices fluctuate from $2.80 to $3.50 a gallon. Butthat is partly because it is rare. The price would drop with increaseddemand and more production. Mileage is comparable to regular diesel,varying by engine type. It actually is better for your engine, as it iscleaner and has more lubrication.

Consumer demand could drastically change the fortunes of what is a verypromising alternative energy source that, among its obvious features, hasthe added benefit of boosting the American economy because it ismanufactured in the United States from renewable resources.

Nations that switch to alternatives such as biodiesel before the worldfinally pumps the last gallon of primordial ooze out of the planet aregoing to find the transition a lot easier.

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