Biodiesel (B20) is produced from virgin soy-based vegetable oils or used grease and vegetable oils from restaurants. It is typically blended at a 20:80 ratio with conventional diesel. It costs slightly more than regular diesel, but produces fewer emissions, especially particulates and carbon monoxide, and may be used in any vehicle designed to burn conventional diesel. Biodiesel has excellent lubricity and cleansing properties. Thus some users have experienced reduced engine wear and enhanced performance following an initial period of fuel system cleansing.

Biodiesel Characteristics

¨ B20 is typically $0.10 to $0.20 more per gallon than diesel
¨ Available and sold in pure or pre-blended form
¨ Tests indicate either same or slight improvements in fuel economy and/or performance; no maintenance differences (added detergent properties will cause clean out fuel system and clog fuel filter initially)
¨ Most tailpipe emissions are significantly reduced compared with diesel, NOx emissions are comparable or slightly higher than diesel. Additives may reduce NOx emissions.
¨ Substantial greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction on life-cycle basis.

(Note: Some diesel engines/vehicles have been modified to operate on filtered used oils that have not been processed into biodiesel. It is not known whether large scale tests on performance, reliability, and emissions have been performed on these vehicles and fuels.)





Central Ohio Clean Fuels Coalition

930 Kinnear Road • Columbus, OH 43212

Phone: (614) 292-5435 • Fax: (614) 688-4111

[email protected]



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Links to Other Resources:

National Biodiesel Board -

More Information on Biodiesel from the Alternative Fuels Data Center -

Alternative Fuel Station Locator -

Biodiesel Users - Examples of Successful Fleet Uses -

Niche Market Info - Various Bus/Transport types and Heavy Duty Trucks -

News from Around the U.S. and World Links to Policy Actions - Make a Difference! Are You A Member? Why Choose Clean, American Fuels? Visit the Ohio EPA's AirOhio Page MORPC's Ozone Action Program... Dispatch Op-Ed Article written by our Executive Director, Sam Spofforth