Biodiesel from waste programme lifts off

Seven London boroughs, Thames Water and Transport for London are collaborating in a £1 million project to collect waste cooking oil and turn it into biodiesel for local authority transport fleets.

The Biodiesel Initiative for Sustainable Transport from Recycled Oil (BISTRO) aims to produce 20,000 litres of biodiesel a week. It will build a plant in Bromley in 2006, but initially waste oil will be sent overseas for recovery.

The technology is well established in continental Europe and the London scheme follows similar projects in Valencia, Spain, and Graz, Austria.

Some 100 catering establishments in Bromley have signed up for the pilot stage of the scheme. Thames Water is running the free collection operation. The company aims to cut illegal disposal of fats and oils, which causes about 50,000 blockages a year.

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