Yes, that thing really runs on vegetable oil
(we get asked that a lot).
The Aphrodesia bus, nicknamed the Votemobile for the Just Vote Tour, is a converted airport shuttle bus that has a tank of diesel and a tank of vegetable oil. We start on diesel, then switch over to veggie after about 10 minutes of highway driving (the engine needs to be running hot for the veggie oil to run smoothly). Vegetable oil is slightly different than biodiesel (which we try and run our diesel tank on as often as possible): biodiesel is diesel fuel made from plants, while vegetable oil is the stuff you cook with (this is often referred to as SVO- Straight Veggie Oil).
Where do we get the veggie oil? Wesson would work, though it’s kind of expensive. We prefer the alleyways behind Asian restaurants, where we use a special filter and hose to pump the used cooking into the tank like so-
Any diesel engine can be converted to run on vegetable oil (the first diesel engine ran on peanut oil!), and this conversion will usually cost you around $500 to $1000. Vegetable oil burns 80% cleaner than gasoline and can even be bought commercially in some areas for far less than the price of gas (getting it yourself from restaurants is, we admit, pretty damn gross). You can also make your own. Best of all, a vegetable oil-running machine is not dependent on big petroleum companies like Shell and Exxon. By driving on vegetable oil you can help the environment and lessen America’s dependence on foreign oil at the same time- pretty neat, huh?