Northeast Biodiesel of Greenfield, Massachusetts, USA, is a community-owned manufacturing plant making biodiesel from recycled vegetable oil.
It is majority owned by Co-op Power, a renewable energy co-operative owned by consumers in Massachusetts, Vermont and New York. Co-op Power operates within a regional network of autonomous local organising councils to create a multi-class, multi-racial movement for a sustainable and just energy future. At the heart of this future is a Green Fuels FuelMatic processor.
We can’t help but be inspired by the pioneering spirit which has pulled this community together to take bold action for the environment. Rather than complaining and hoping someone else would take the initiative, they set themselves the ambitious goal of dramatically reducing their reliance on fossil fuels even though it meant funding the project from within the community. They share a passionate belief in creating renewable energy and making a significant contribution to their regional economy.
The enterprise will employ 13 staff to operate the plant and is already supporting a host of indirect construction jobs. They will continue to create employment as they take on staff for facility operations and maintenance, collection of used cooking oil from local restaurants and distribution of biodiesel. Biodiesel will be used for transportation – school buses, trucks and snow plows – and to generate energy for heating and for use in farm and construction equipment.
Scope for growth
Northeast Biodiesel will start processing in late 2012. Operating three shifts per day, output is expected to be 1,75 million gallons per annum of 100% certifiable biodiesel. The bio-refinery has been designed to include a second FuelMatic within a year for a total output of 3.5 million gallons per year.
The Northeast Biodiesel project is a win for the community, a win for the environment, and a win for the local economy.