Biodiesel in Our Future

There might be a silver lining for South Valley in high oil
prices: They might make biodiesel an economically viable
alternative fuel.
There might be a silver lining for South Valley in high oil prices: They might make biodiesel an economically viable alternative fuel.

Because South Valley has a thriving agriculture industry, and because we’re located so close to the center of high technology, Silicon Valley, it seems were in the prime place to become players in a cutting edge new technology.

Biodiesel is made from plant and animal waste, an environmentally attractive alternative to traditional diesel fuel, which is a petroleum product.

Former Morgan Hill Mayor John Varela’s company, Biofuel Diesels, is planning to open a 500,000-gallon production facility in South Santa Clara County sometime in the near future.Varela predicts his new company will bring with it approximately 100 jobs. (Note to Gilroy Economic Development Director Larry Cope.)

With the recent spike in oil prices, petroleum-based diesel no longer beats biodiesel in the pump price wars. Given increasing demand for oil worldwide, it’s a situation that’s not likely to change, creating a unique opportunity for biodiesel entrepreneurs.

We applaud Varela’s vision and wish him the best in his business venture.

were in the prime place to become players in a cutting edge new technology.

Biodiesel is made from plant and animal waste, an environmentally attractive alternative to traditional diesel fuel, which is a petroleum product.

Former Morgan Hill Mayor John Varela’s company, Biofuel Diesels, is planning to open a 500,000-gallon production facility in South Santa Clara County sometime in the near future.Varela predicts his new company will bring with it approximately 100 jobs. (Note to Gilroy Economic Development Director Larry Cope.)

With the recent spike in oil prices, petroleum-based diesel no longer beats biodiesel in the pump price wars. Given increasing demand for oil worldwide, it’s a situation that’s not likely to change, creating a unique opportunity for biodiesel entrepreneurs.

We applaud Varela’s vision and wish him the best in his business venture.

But we also want to urge a regional approach to this potentially lucrative opportunity. Let’s work together to see if we can turn high oil prices and the attractiveness of biodiesel into more than 100 jobs for South Valley.

We call upon Gavilan Community College, the Santa Clara and San Benito County farm bureaus and boards of supervisors, and the Gilroy, Morgan Hill, Hollister and San Juan Bautista city councils, economic development corporations, and chambers of commerce to work together to find ways to make the most of this unique opportunity for South Valley.

Here’s a chance to take one of our greatest strengths, our ag industry, and turn it into an even bigger asset. If we can leverage our ag industry properly, South Valley might become the center of a new, viable alternative fuel industry.

Politicians talk about the need to attract good-paying jobs and new businesses to our community. We hear about budget shortfalls, disappointing tax revenues, and impending layoffs.

Let’s take a break from the bleak economic forecast and work proactively to position South Valley to become the center of a promising new industry.

“We have an opportunity to not only produce but to market biodiesel,” Varela told reporter Matt King recently. “In light of what’s happening with petroleum going through the roof, this is an opportune time.”

South Valley, let’s pounce on this opportunity.

But we also want to urge a regional approach to this potentially lucrative opportunity. Let’s work together to see if we can turn high oil prices and the attractiveness of biodiesel into more than 100 jobs for South Valley.

We call upon Gavilan Community College, the Santa Clara and San Benito County farm bureaus and boards of supervisors, and the Gilroy, Morgan Hill, Hollister and San Juan Bautista city councils, economic development corporations, and chambers of commerce to work together to find ways to make the most of this unique opportunity for South Valley.

Here’s a chance to take one of our greatest strengths, our ag industry, and turn it into an even bigger asset. If we can leverage our ag industry properly, South Valley might become the center of a new, viable alternative fuel industry.

Politicians talk about the need to attract good-paying jobs and new businesses to our community. We hear about budget shortfalls, disappointing tax revenues, and impending layoffs.

Let’s take a break from the bleak economic forecast and work proactively to position South Valley to become the center of a promising new industry.

“We have an opportunity to not only produce but to market biodiesel,” Varela told reporter Matt King recently. “In light of what’s happening with petroleum going through the roof, this is an opportune time.”

South Valley, let’s pounce on this opportunity.

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