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Chip pan oil to be turned into biodiesel fuel

Instead of waste vegetable oil going down the sink, the Environment Agency and the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) want to make it easier for places like chip shops to avoid regulatory red tape and produce high quality oil for biodiesel use. More than 75,000 tonnes of waste vegetable oil transforms into biodiesel each year and by 2008/09 the Government wants at least 2.5% of fuel consumed in the UK to be biofuel. Environment Agency head of external programmes Martin Brocklehurst said: Biodiesel derived from waste vegetable oil is carbon-neutral; it reduces waste and improves resource efficiency. We have worked with the biodiesel industry to develop this proposal, a Quality Protocol for waste vegetable oil, which will save businesses the time and costs associated with meeting waste regulations. In deregulating biodiesel made from waste vegetable oil, the product can better compete with biodiesel derived from virgin oil. This will also increase the volume of waste vegetable oil recovered from places like take-aways, restaurants, chip shops and food manufacturing sites. It should also reduce the amount disposed to sewer with all the benefits that will bring to the water industry. The Environment Agency is now launching a 12-week consultation which will invite trade bodies and the public to this consultation. Despite approximately 100,000 tonnes of waste vegetable oil being collected from the catering and food industries each year, a considerable amount still goes uncollected and often ends up being poured down the drain, added Brocklehurst. Waste vegetable oil has a high calorific value and although it may have come to the end of its useful life in cooking, the energy contained within is still present and can be used. In order to encourage the use of biodiesel derived from waste vegetable oil, biodiesel which meets the requirements of the Quality Protocol will no longer require environmental authorisations for its storage and use as an engine fuel. Image: Solidified fat in sewer

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