Monday, July 31, 2006

Asheville Real Estate Journal Sustainable in Asheville 

Asheville Real Estate Journal


Things HAPPEN when people start getting together and talking.
The talk here in the Greater Asheville area, where “THINGS already are happening, is about making wise choices. A talkative and listening and creative citizenry has set its heart on finding ways around the “energy crisis” and the global warming predicament.

We’ve taken the challenge. We intend to uneath new ways that will benefit our ecology and our economy. Take, for example, one community owned business, Blue Ridge BioFuels. This business has a two-fold objective:1) Educate potential users and 2) Bring locally produced clean-burning products to Asheville and Western North Carolina. I asked them about their source. “Our biodiesel is produced from area restaurants' waste vegetable oil and burns cleanly in any diesel engine, “ I was informed. Furthermore, contrary to popular notions, "no modification is necessary to use biodiesel in your diesel vehicle. Biodiesel can also replace the home heating oil and you can find it right at a local gas station (Gas-Up) located on Haywood Road or in bulk delivery, “ a spokesperson said.

Check this out!

One thing that contributes to Asheville’s good “kharma” is the way of sharing that seems to prevail among the people who live here….if you join the boiodiesel coop, you can get a discounted price on the fuel.

Asheville is on the “greenfront” looking forward, in happy anticipation, at a forecast of creative resolution in a natural economy throughout our region, nationally and across the globe . In Western North Carolina, the N.C. Solar Center, a State-sponsored agency, has joined the bandwagon. It is doing its part to accelerate that trend by making grants to alt-fuel producers and fleets. Warren Wilson College is eager to make use of the new fuels. UNCA is helping Blue Ridge Biofuels obtain national transportation-fuel certification so the school can use a 20-percent (and, eventually, 50-percent) blend of the cooperative's biodiesel in its campus shuttles.

Buncombe County Solid Waste, whose fleet now runs on biodiesel, announced that the county also intends to convert 15 ambulances to the fuel and hopes eventually to use methane gas produced by decomposing vegetable matter at the county landfill to power vehicles designed to run on compressed natural gas, such as the vehicles the Sheriff's Department is converting to CNG. The Blue Ridge Parkway also is looking into biodiesel. Privately owned local fleets such as Hart Distributing of Weaverville, a wine-and-beer distributor, is operating two biodiesel delivery trucks, along with several propane.

Nationally, spearheaded by advocates of thought-&-action for the good of everyone, and the groundwork of brave souls such the person formerly known as the “Next President of the United States”, Al Gore, there’s a movement toward energy-wise (and economy-wise) awareness blooming, that makes many Asheville residents smile. Recently, the tractor-maker, John Deere, heeding the demands of its customer base: American farmers, rolled out the first of its new line of tractors burning B2, a blend of conventional diesel fuel containing B2 percent biodiesel. And BioWillie, the brand of biodiesel that country-music star and FarmAid hero Willie Nelson introudcued, is now “singing” to the nation's long-haul truckers… with the applause of clean air advocates. It is far cleaner than petro-diesel and more than three times more energy-efficient to produce.

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