Fossil fuel is a depleting commodity that’s destined to rise in price due to supply and demand. With fuel prices in the UK ever increasing it’s a good idea to look into alternative fuels as a way to save both money and the environment.
Today, fuel remains dominated by oil based resources (i.e. petrol and diesel) yet there are an increasing number of energy efficient solutions that utilise greener fuels such as hybrid cars that run primarily on electricity.
Here are three quirky alternatives that could save you a considerable amount of money.
- CHIP FAT
In the Caribbean, it’s not unheard of for older cars to be fueled on leftover oil. Albeit a crude homemade practice, it does work, and this homemade biofuel is a lot cheaper than diesel, perform roughly the same, and produces less emissions than it’s commercial counterpart.
Whilst this is a savvy way to save money, currently In the UK, this is practiced by only a few hundred people where they pick up leftover oil from fish and chip shops. The question, of course, is whether it’s worth all the hassle and the potential harm caused to your engine.
- GAS OIL
There are two different classes of fuel, for tax purposes – there’s the diesel you get out of the fuel station pump (which is usually heavily taxed no matter where you are in the world) and then there’s gas oil, often known as red diesel due to it being dyned by the authorities as a deterrent for use in private vehicles. Red diesel is the same as standard diesel in composition, yet it is a lot cheaper than standard diesel due to the reduction in the level of tax applied.
Whilst, you can’t legally use this in your private vehicle (which doesn’t stop everyone but is easy to catch if you were caught red handed, so to speak) there are a number of commercial uses such as powering tractors, plant machinery, and boats.
There’s currently a lot of research being undertaken in the area of biofuel. In this field there are some quite obscure ideas about what can be converted into biofuel, as an example, the University of Louisiana proposes to use alligator fat (which is an unused byproduct of the farming of alligators for food and their skins), or other animal fat such as cows and pigs.
The idea relies on a new technique where the fat reacts with methanol at very high temperatures in order to produce biofuel. The interesting thing about this, from an investment perspective, is that it can be done within a few minutes making it a strong commercial proposition.
There are many weird and wonderful ideas within the area of biofuel, yet the concept is sound from both a financial and environmental perspective. One of the most intriguing biofuel ideas is derived from research undertaken by Warwick University suggesting that one day our cars might be powered by the waste products of chocolate!