Hawaii governor tours BIB plant, commemorates Nat'l Biodiesel Day

By Pacific Biodiesel Technologies | March 18, 2015

Gov. David Ige and Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui proclaimed March 18, 2015, as Pacific Biodiesel Day to perpetuate and honor the legacy of the inventor of the diesel engine, Rudolph Diesel, as well as the contributions of a local company, Pacific Biodiesel. Recognizing the significance of the occasion, the governor and state transportation director Ford Fuchigami visited the biodiesel refinery on Hawaii Island on March 17.

The crew of Big Island Biodiesel celebrated with the dignitaries, including Wes Yonamine of the airports division, who expressed support for the community-based model of parent company Pacific Biodiesel Technologies. It was a first visit to such a facility for Governor Ige and Director Fuchigami, underscoring the governor’s energy plan and commitment to renewable energy for transportation in Hawaii.

During Ige’s site visit to the newest and most advanced Pacific Biodiesel refinery in Kea`au, Hawaii, he emphasized the state’s serious commitment to food security and energy sustainability. The governor commended Pacific Biodiesel for being a global pioneer in the field of biofuels and for the company president Robert King’s vision to position Hawaii to become an energy independent and self-sustainable state. Ige issued a proclamation declaring March 18, 2015, as Pacific Biodiesel Day in Hawaii.

Biodiesel is a cleaner-burning, renewable alternative fuel produced in Hawaii from recycled waste vegetable oil. Biodiesel is safe for all diesel engines and has been registered with the U.S. EPA as a fuel and a fuel additive. It can be used pure or blended at any percentage with petroleum diesel. Even in a 20 percent blend, as used by the city and county of Honolulu for well over a decade, there are significant benefits. The National Biodiesel Board states that the 20 percent blend, or B20, provides superior lubrication, equal performance and is biodegradable at twice the rate of No. 2 petroleum diesel, making it an all-around better fuel that can even extend the life of diesel engines.

According to Fuchigami, “We are committed to convert all of our diesel fuel equipment and vehicles to B20. This fuel is a blend of 20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent petroleum diesel. We support initiatives to buy local and promote the use of clean energy fuels.”

National Biodiesel Day commemorates the birthday of Rudolf Diesel who invented the diesel engine in 1898, intending it to be fueled with peanut oil. Because the diesel engines of today are refined and improved versions of Rudolf Diesel's original concept, they require a more refined fuel and biodiesel is the compatible replacement for raw vegetable oils as well as fossil fuels.

Since opening and operating the very first retail biodiesel pump in America, Pacific Biodiesel has built a solid reputation as a leading pioneer in the rapidly expanding biodiesel industry. Founded in 1995, the company has grown to more than 70 employees statewide and has won state, national and international awards for innovations in the industry. With experience in all aspects of the biodiesel business, including oil/grease trap pumping, biodiesel production, marketing and distribution, process technology design and engineering, quality management services, and feedstock R&D, PBT has industry-leading accomplishments no other U.S. company can claim. Pacific Biodiesel’s vision has remained constant: to create truly sustainable, community-based biodiesel production facilities in order to maximize the economic and environmental benefits and minimize energy consumption.


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