In the first years of this great decade, “biodiesel” was by no means a well known fuel option. Common Vision’s beloved founder Blair Philips searched far and wide to find someone to teach the organization how to make this mythical vegetable oil fuel. In the far reaches of the Big Island of Hawaii he found he found just this mad scientist and brought this information back to the mainland. Common Vision built a reactor out of a 55 gallon drum, three cinder blocks, a propane cook stove, and an old trolling boat motor and got to work engaging the alchemy of biofuel.
In 2002, Common traveled across America, teaching community workshops on how to brew Bio-diesel from recycled vegetable oil and create local biodiesel Co-ops in 20 cities including Los Angeles, Phoenix, Detroit, and New York City. With a volunteer crew of 10 and a mobile Biodiesel refinery, Common Vision brewed over 1500 gallons of Biodiesel fueling the entire 7,000+ mile journey.
The 2002 Biodiesel Outreach tour taught thousands of people about making biodiesel, the necessity of reducing fossil fuel consumption, and successfully left several local biodiesel Co-ops in its wake. Among the successful inspiration-seeds planted on this tour include Blue Ridge Biofuels (http://www.blueridgebiofuels.com) in Asheville, NC, one of the nation’s larger biofuel cooperatives today.