On December 3, Santa Barbara MTD announced it is ending its use of petroleum diesel and will now rely on renewable diesel to fuel its fleet of buses. According to a press release put out by MTD, the transition will require “no infrastructure changes” in bus parts of gas tanks.
Renewable diesel is refined from a mix of more than 10 different wastes and residues and various vegetable oils, including used cooking oil and waste animal and fish fat. It releases around 80 percent less emissions than its petroleum counterpart, as well as 33 percent fewer fine particulates that can have adverse effects on people with asthma and other respiratory issues. The transition moves MTD closer toward its stated goal of reaching 100 percent battery-electric by 2030.