Sunday, May 3, 2009

Braddock Firm Sells Kits Worldwide to Run Vehicles on Vegetable Oil

Braddock-based Fossil Free Fuel makes and sells kits in the U.S. and around the world to convert cars and trucks to run on environmentally friendly vegetable oil.

Founded in 2006 in this up-and-coming suburb of Pittsburgh, Fossil Free Fuel “offers the latest in two-tank renewable fuel system retrofits for diesel engines.”

That means the vehicles start up using their diesel engines and then automatically switch over to run on vegetable oil, officially known as biofuel, when the engine reaches a temperature of 180 degrees, according to FFF Shop Manager Adam West.

The vegetable oil comes mainly from restaurants, West said. Another local outfit called Steel City Biofuels, a program of Allegheny County Cooperative Extension of Penn State University, offers an interactive map of places to buy the biofuel.

The cost of converting a passenger vehicle to biofuels is about $1,500, while the cost of converting a truck is about $2,000, according to the FFF website. The company operates a 9,000-square-foot shop in Braddock where installations take place.

For more information about Fossil Free Fuel, go to www.fossilfreefuel.com

Steel City Biofuels’ vision is “for southwestern Pennsylvania to become a national leader in the biofuels industry through increased support for the research and development of sustainable feedstocks, production and vehicle technologies, significant public and private investments in production and distribution infrastructure, and the development of aggressive Federal, State and local legislation.”

For more information about Steel City Biofuels, go to steelcitybiofuels.psu.edu

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