The head of the Cowichan Bio-Diesel Co-op is testing the new pump on Allenby road today in advance of its grand opening Monday.
The Co-op is hoping a second location in the Cowichan Valley, plus more bio-diesel fuels to choose from, will help convince more drivers to choose a greener way to fuel their vehicle.
“It’s just like a regular gas station except it doesn’t sell regular gas from it,” said Brian Roberts, the Co-op’s President. “It sells biodiesel from recycled cooking oil.”
The new pumps which take credit cards, with no membership required, advances the Coop from its beginning 14 years ago when you could buy bio-diesel by the jug at the farmer’s market.
But the majority of the bio-diesel still comes from used cooking oil from local restaurants.
The Craig Street Brew Pub and Just Jake’s are among those that have been giving their used cooking oil to the Co-op since it began.
“We know our used cooking oil is going towards a good cause and being reconstituted for something very beneficial,” said Dan Bertrand, General Manager of Just Jakes and the Craig Street Brew Pub.
“As well it saves us money of actually having to dispose of it.”
One of the new offerings is bio-diesel that complies with all vehicle warranties.
“So anybody with a vehicle that has a warranty that wants to try it out can try the B20 but for the people who really want to maximize the environmental and social benefit they’re able to use either the B50 blend or the B100 blend which is 100 percent biodiesel which is kind of our premium environmental fuel,” said Roberts.
There is an Island Bio-Diesel Co-op that is similar in Victoria though it operates at a smaller scale.
The Cowichan Co-op says its prices are competitive with regular diesel but when you fill up you can feel better about your purchase and even catch a whiff of french fries from the exhaust.