Cutting the Cord

A few weeks ago, a donor (anonymous) provided the turtle sanctuary at Playa Viva a bio-diesel “plant” to make our own bio-diesel to power a diesel 4×4.  The donation also included some consulting by a specialist in bio-diesel manufacturing, Miguel Gutierrez (read more about Miguel’s trip from Mexico to Patagonia in a bio-diesel powered van).

Miguel just spent a second weekend with the volunteers from La Tortuga Viva turtle sanctuary upgrading the bio-diesel plant, reviewing  manufacturing procedures and teaching them how to make a cleaner form of bio-diesel that we can use in the Playa Viva Passenger Van. So as of today, we are officially operating on bio-diesel made from waste oil from nearby restaurants. Yep, the emissions smell like french fries and tacos.

What is so significant for us about this milestone? First, this allows us to realize one of the goals we had for Playa Viva since we first started envisioning this project. Second, this is part of a brought strategy of “cutting the cord” from some of the largest companies/utilities in Mexico.  We started as 100% off grid solar and do NOT pay a bill to the Mexican monopoly utility company, CFE.  We use satellite rather than land line and are NOT paying a bill to Telmex. Now, we are looking forward to not paying bills to Pemex.  CFE, Telmex and Pemex free.

I’m curious if anyone has any good information on how going with bio-diesel will cut down on our total emissions.  Please share.

Photo to the right is of the new head of La Tortuga Viva turtle sanctuary volunteers filling up the tank of the Playa Viva van with bio-diesel.

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