Biodiesel is considered as an environmental friendly fuel. Biodiesel is made of vegetable oil, waste cooking oil/restaurant greeze, animal oils and fats and tallow. Best sources are rapeseed, soybean and palm oil, but most biodiesel is produced from waste vegetable oils. The agricultural produced oil is under development because the process is still expensive.
The benefits of biodiesel is that it does not release any carbon dioxide, it is biodegradable, clean-burning and non-toxic. Biodiesel has better lubricating properties and much higher cetane ratings (measurment of quality), than classical diesel.
Biodiesel is mostly used in standard diesel engines and is thus distinct from the vegetable and waste oils used to fuel converted diesel engines. Biodiesel can be used alone or blended with petrodiesel. Can be used by vechicles, trains, aircraft, heating oil, clean oil spills and in generators. Biodiesel is a great solution to reduce petroleum dependence and improve the environment.
The technology is not new as transesterification of a vegetable oil was conducted as early as 1853 by Patrick Duffy.