"One Man Who Was Convicted in Los Angeles… Left the Courthouse, and Got Right Back in His Truck, Stealing Grease"

Jack Baruth
by Jack Baruth

“It’s become the new copper,” a commodity that also attracts thieves, according to a recent NPR article. Craven criminals in bio-Benzes ganking grease from rancid restaurants, evading enforcement while powerless pigs can’t cope and draw disdain.

As usual, the invisible hand of the market has acted to equalize prices…

According to NPR,

Yellow grease, the proper name for cooking oil that’s had the food and trash filtered out of it, is selling for about 40 cents a pound, almost five times what it was a decade ago. That means a gallon of yellow grease today sells for more than $3 a gallon — on par with a gallon of milk.

A gallon of milk? Here’s another valid comparison — a gallon of diesel fuel. This week’s national average for diesel fuel was $3.88. No doubt TTAC has a few biodiesel experts who can give us the complete scoop, but it doesn’t look like there’s much incentive to use yellow-grease-based biodiesel instead of the stuff you get at the local truck stop.

While the idea of police “cracking down” on biodiesel users has some hilarious images associated with it — slow-speed chases with fifty-horsepower W123 sedans, greased-up hipster chicks ducking the cops by effortlessly slipping through tiny concrete sewer pipes — for legitimate grease recyclers this trend represents a major risk to their business. Still, one has to respect people who are willing to steal dirty grease and/or pay regular market prices for biodiesel, just because they genuinely believe in the economic and ecological benefits of doing so. Even if they don’t respect the law.

Jack Baruth
Jack Baruth

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9 of 34 comments
  • Jpcavanaugh Jpcavanaugh on Nov 10, 2011

    And again, the world is surprised and amazed to see the laws of supply and demand in action.

  • Philadlj Philadlj on Nov 10, 2011

    True, it "doesn’t look like there’s much incentive" if yellow grease goes for $3.88, but "more than $3 a gallon" does not equal $3.88. Up to 87 cents discount per gallon is a heckuva deal.

    • See 4 previous
    • Dvp cars Dvp cars on Nov 13, 2011

      @Toad .....toad... I'd rather not know where that "crud" you refer to, goes..... NIMBY, I hope, unless it's good for roses\tomatoes\(hemp?)....I also agree with your "time and effort" reference, not many wives or neighborhoods would rejoice at a lingering deep fried egg roll ambiance.

  • CougarXR7 CougarXR7 on Nov 10, 2011

    Forget the 300D- I'd go straight to the top and get its big sister the 300SD. Add a set of Lorinser or AMG rims, do the Euro headlight conversion, put the slim euro bumpers on, and install a custom aftermarket cold-air intake and exhaust, and you can save the earth in style!

  • Ciddyguy Ciddyguy on Nov 11, 2011

    I have a long time friend who had, or perhaps still has his 85 300D wagon that he, for a time anyway, ran on biodiesel. Currently, straight diesel sells in some Seattle stations at over $4 a gallon, with regular 87 octane gas selling at these same stations for just under $4 a Gal. The cheapest places seem to be Arco and Costco at around $3.70 or a bit less a Gal for 87 gas, but I don't think diesel is sold at either place though.