In 2005, an ad on Craigslist for a diesel vehicle led to an informal gathering to talk about vegetable oil and biodiesel. The non-profit Austin Biodiesel Cooperative soon formed to gather oil and make biodiesel on a small community scale. Resources became tight as some members faded, and the land we had access to became unavailable. DieselGreen Fuels was created by the core members in the summer of 2006.
After several months of discussion and resource gathering, we moved into our first home at East Central Storage. 1200 square feet seemed enormous at first, but we quickly filled it with oil storage tanks, pumps, and LOTS of odds and ends. We soon ran out of room and rented extra space around us to store our growing collection of greasy plumbing parts. By this time, we had become licensed “renderers”, able to legally collect used oil for processing into the raw material to make biodiesel, and to be used as fuel for specially converted vehicles. Our biodiesel distribution business slowly grew from a few individual and fleet customers to include Austin’s premier Eco-store as a retail outlet, along with a rapidly growing base of SVO customers.
Word spread fast, and we found ourselves filling up Willie Nelson’s tour bus, brokering large biodiesel orders for the military, meeting people from all over the country on road trips, and building a loyal customer base. Eventually, our tanks and trailers ovewhelmed even that space, and we found a new home just a few blocks away on Cesar Chavez. The other members moved on, and Jason continues to grow the core parts of the business: vegetable oil collection and biodiesel distribution. Through a partnership with Ecology Action, we accept residential oil at EA’s 9th St. location, and store our equipment at another location.
We now have an industrial vacuum truck and a fuel delivery truck to support our growing business.