Cross-Country Biodiesel Bus

David Maurer has a good piece in today’s Progress about Charlottesville’s Scott Wilcox and Luke & Emily Scruby, and their attempted Virginia-to-Alaska round-trip in a school bus modified to run on biodiesel.

Wilcox and Scruby started their trip from Albemarle County on May 29. Their first stop was in Blacksburg to pick up Emily Scruby, who works for an engineering firm there.

Then it was on to Memphis, Tenn., to get some blues and barbecue ribs. By the time they reached Sevierville, Tenn., in the southeastern section of the state, they needed fuel.

The travelers struck out at a couple of eateries, but they hit a home run when they asked the manager of a Golden Corral restaurant if they could fill up at the restaurant’s grease trap.

“They were so nice to us,” Emily Scruby said via cell phone. “We sucked up 200 gallons of vegetable oil, and they even treated us to a free meal.”

Harrisonburg is, to my knowledge, the closest place with a gas station that provides biodiesel — anybody with a diesel engine can run an 80/20 diesel/biodiesel mix without making any modification to their car. Fuel could definitely increase their hipness quotient by making it available.