New Jersey's Woolley Fuels increases biodiesel blend levels

By Nicholas Zeman | November 20, 2009
Posted December 1, 2009

Biofuels mandates are "around the corner" in New Jersey, said Norman Woolley Jr., of the state's Woolley Fuels Co., which recently increased its biodiesel blending capabilities from 5 percent to 30 percent.

"We're trying to stay ahead of the curve and were the first to put in a biodiesel pump in New Jersey," Woolley said. "It's very hard to get a blended product here, so we installed the blending facilities and buy B100 from producers." The cost of installing the pump was about $25,000, but Woolley fuels has seen increased demand month over month since offering methyl esters. But the fuel is hard to source because the development of the biodiesel industry has been slow in the state.

Drivers can select what blend of biodiesel they want to fill with right at the pump. Wooley then programs the desired level via remote control to customize the fill. "Drivers are certainly finding the pump," Woolley said. "It's been a while since we've seen increased demand, but we are selling more and more biodiesel."

The company has been buying soy biodiesel from Sprague Energy, a Pennsylvania-based biodiesel producer, and it usually has to wait about two weeks before receiving a load to fill its 2,000-gallon tank. "We were advised to start with soy biodiesel because it is considered to be high quality," Woolley said. "But there are very few companies in this area that we can get biodiesel from."

The company has plans to add 12,000 gallons of storage capacity this coming summer in order to prepare for increased demand for bioheat-the heating oil market is Woolley's biggest sales sector. Biodiesel blends from B2 to B5 are currently priced at a discount to conventional diesel of about 10 cents-per-gallon, while higher level blends in the B20 to B30 range are about 12 cents-per-gallon more than conventional diesel, Woolley said.
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