Fuel and Hybrids

With the rising cost of gas prices and the effects on the environment that fuel has, its time we all start thinking about alternative fuel options. There are a few options currently available to consumers and one of them is biodiesel. Biodiesel is an alternative to petroleum diesel and consists of both new and used vegetable oils and animal fats. It’s also better for the environment since it reduces emissions of carbon dioxide into the air. According to the US Department of Energy biodiesel also “reduces greenhouse gas emissions because carbon dioxide released from biodiesel combustion is offset by the carbon dioxide sequestered while growing the soybeans or other feedstock” (http://www.afdc.energy.gov/afdc/fuels/biodiesel_benefits.html). Another type of fuel is E85 which is comprised of ethanol and gasoline. Although it uses gasoline is still burns cleaner than unleaded gasoline.
Make sure you do your research when looking in to alternative fuel sources or hybrid cars so you can avoid greenwashing by the company selling the product. Items that need to be checked into include fuel economy, CO2 emissions, and just the general pollution the vehicle is emitting. Also there are new lines of hybrid SUV’s on the market, which are great since they consume less fuel however they are still an SUV and utilize more fuel than a compact car. Another type of greenwashing to watch out for are the car companies that produce a hybrid vehicle but the company themselves don’t practice being “green” in other ways.

~Melanie P.

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