Why do I always answer this question wrong?

So… I was talking about bio-fuel today and the question that always comes up, that I answer wrong is “how much is it per gallon?”.  I don’t always know the answer to that question. I don’t make it myself because it is a lot of work for the money and I have an overall lack of confidence in my ability to filter out ALL of the water and every molecule of potential grit. I have a 300 gallon tote of it (from Blue Ridge Biofuels), sitting in my barn that I purchased last year. The price, like all fuel fluctuates. It has been, in my experience cheaper slightly than gas or diesel after taxes are paid. I do pay my taxes because I use it on road. Here is what I always forget to say. I don’t do it for the money. While I am a tiny drop in the bucket, it gives me a little bit of peace to utilize fuel diversity. The oil/fuel industry is complicated and controversial, but without argument has some serious detrimental effects on humanity (one could directly or indirectly link it to wars, money poured into unstable areas, civilizations purposefully destabilized for profit, severe environmental damage…which you can follow the cause and effect into increased arms trade, increased human trafficking and while yes—that is complicated, when there is that much money and power to be gained there are more than a few lines that get crossed). While I do not completely abstain from it, I get some personal satisfaction knowing that I am making an effort not to rely on it completely. I try to teach my students about the importance of sustainability, the value of being concerned for other people and how our collaborative choices and consumption directly affect the earth, working conditions of people on the other side of the world, etc. Trying to *model* sustainable practices gives me a little more confidence when I talk about it. It is one thing to say “there are alternative fuels available.” It is another to say “My car runs on recycled fryer grease that came from a local restaurant, within 100 miles from here, made from corn grown in our state.” I think…maybe completely untrue, but I like think that it shifts the reaction from “cool…I heard about that online” to “hmm. maybe I could do that.” While it may not change the world, it may give someone a choice where they thought they had none before.

Garth Brooks line: “And no matter what you do it’s still the same thing. But it’s not the world that I am changing. I do this so this world will know. That it will not change me.” Not exactly what I mean…but yeah….the starfish story…it mattered to this one.

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