A Maul alternative fuel manufacturer has announced nearing completion of a new biodiesel production facility in Nagano, Japan, site of the 1998 Winter Olympics. Robert King, President of Pacific Biodiesel, Inc. , which owns and operates the biodiesel fuel plant at the Central Maul Landfill, says the Japan enterprise will be the second such facility in the Pacific Rim and will serve as part of a demonstration project for alternative fuels and conservation awareness during the ‘98 Olympic Games.

The Nagano facility will be owned and operated by Yoshida and Company, and will make biodiesel from cooking oil recycled from local Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants in the Nagano area. Almost identical to the Maul plant, the Japan site will have a capacity of 200,000 gallons per year. King will return to Nagano next month and plans a completion date of November 19, 1997. Opening Ceremonies for next year’s Winter Olympics are scheduled for February 3, 1998.A renewable fuel derived from vegetable oil, biodiesel is currently used throughout Europe but has only recently been commercially available in the United States. Pacific Biodiesel uses a catalytic chemical process that has been documented by many research organizations in the U.S., King explained. The resulting biodegradable alternative fuel reduces tailpipe emissions, visible smoke and noxious odors, and operates well in a conventional diesel engine with no engine modifications, as documented by King himself who powers his own diesel pickup solely on biodiesel.On Maul, fuel is being produced from used cooking oil which was previously dumped in the County’s landfills. Pacific Biodiesel’s local customers include the County of Maui wastewater and landfill trucks, two boating operations on Kauai, hotels with standby generators and independent farmers with diesel farm equipment.