Friday, January 16, 2009

Biodiesel days

Students in Minnesota were the beneficiaries of trying to put Mother Nature in the fuel tank. No school today.

All schools in the Bloomington School District will be closed today after state-required biodiesel fuel clogged in school buses Thursday morning and left dozens of students stranded in frigid weather, the district said late Thursday.

Rick Kaufman, the district's spokesman, said elements in the biodiesel fuel that turn into a gel-like substance at temperatures below 10 degrees clogged about a dozen district buses Thursday morning. Some buses weren't able to operate at all and others experienced problems while picking up students, he said.

"We had students at bus stops longer than we think is acceptable, and that's too dangerous in these types of temperatures," Kaufman said.

Sarah Janecek has a little background on the biofuel folly:

And put this in the category of "you just can't make it up": The only "science" behind the entire biodiesel mandate debate was one Hennepin County study of about a dozen vehicles. The study was conducted in July. [Those of us lobbying on behalf of railroads quietly got railroads amended out of the mandate when we obtained a letter from railroad engine manufacturers saying that all warranties on those engines were void if biodiesel was in the fuel mix.]