Monday, June 20, 2005

L.A. Lags in BioDiesel

Los Angeles tries to be a leader in environmentally-friendly policies, but policies do not always yield results.

For Southern California users like Dervaes, biodiesel is more than a fuel -- it's a lifestyle.

They're devotees willing to pay more, home-brew or drive hours in search of their fuel. They preach sustainability, cleaner cars and ending the nation's dependence on foreign fuel. "We feel it's worth the extra effort on our part. We feel like we're in a battle for our future and this is our salvo," Dervaes explained.

Despite avid users, Los Angeles is a biodiesel wasteland. There are no stations that sell 100 percent biodiesel, called B100, and only one station, in South Los Angeles, that sells a 20 percent biodiesel blend.

Instead, users must drive to Ventura County or arrange for a fuel company to deliver a tank of biodiesel. Or they home-brew, which is time-consuming and complicated for the beginner. Most folks would prefer to buy biodiesel from their local gas station.