Folks wonder why I seem so concerned, why not just let the borough try it out. If it doesn't work, move on and try something else. After all, what's the big deal?
I wonder how much it is going to cost to overhaul diesel truck engines, not to mention the downtime that the trucks are in the shop because of this "pilot program". Does it make sense to save a few dollars in order to risk a few thousand in replacement parts and labor? How will this downtime reduce the borough's effectiveness in responding to the next storm or similar incident? How many dollars is that worth saving? Why are taxpayers like me on the hook for financial risks that are completely avoidable? Perhaps the staff at DPW who take orders from the administration and have to live with this already knows...
Here is the current statewide biodiesel Request for Proposal (RFP). Look at section 3.2 on page 11 and supporting specification summary on page 13. Why would the state be so insistent on its biodiesel meeting ASTM International Specification D6751 - Standard Specification for Biodiesel Fuel? Perhaps Dumont officials should question the purchasing officials in Trenton why they are calling out this seemingly politically suspect technical specification.
Why does the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), the independent body that certifies professionals in the automotive industry, say the same thing when it comes to biodiesel?
Let's be clear about this: I am for exploring alternative energy sources. I am for our borough taking a proactive stance against foreign energy dependence. I am for doing things the right way.
On the last day of the year, the last word on biodiesel does not come from me. Rather, I think the last word comes from the National Biodiesel Board, an industry group cited by Councilman Manna himself:
Biodiesel Basics Page
- Raw vegetable oil cannot meet biodiesel fuel specifications per ASTM D6751;
- Raw vegetable oil is not registered with the EPA;
- Raw vegetable oil is not a legal motor fuel;
- Raw vegetable oil cannot be called biodiesel;
- Dumont cannot claim they are "making biodiesel".
Agree? Disagree? Discuss online or write a letter.