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Donate used cooking oil for biodiesel fuel

Pima County residents asked to drop off grease during recycling drive

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Pima County residents can rid themselves of leftover cooking oil and help the environment during the seventh annual after-Thanksgiving Grease Collection Recycling Event on Friday.

There will be five drop-off locations open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. around Tucson and the grease will be turned into fuel for vehicles with biodiesel engines.

The Pima County Regional Wastewater Reclamation Department, Town of Sahuartia, Pima Association of Governments' (PAG) Clean Cities Program, Grecycle and EDG Fuels work together to collect the grease and produce the clean-burning fuel.

"I am most looking forward to seeing the new faces. This has been an annual event for six years so we see a lot of the same faces. It's exciting to see how much grease people bring and if we are going to break our record," said Colleen Crowninshield, manager of PAG's Clean Cities Program.

More than 4,400 pounds of used cooking oil was collected during the 2010 event. Since the first grease collection in 2005, 13,700 pounds have been collected..

The grease is converted to biodiesel and used in diesel engines in Pima County. 

The biodiesel fuel is available at a few stations in Tucson as a cleaner option because it takes minimal energy to produce and emits fewer pollutants, according to Grecycle, one of the companies that turns unwanted cooking oil into fuel. 

"It's a great public-private partnership and it's really helpful in getting the word out," said Crowninshield. 

Thanks to our donors and sponsors for their support of local independent reporting. Join Kathryn Nunn, Gawain Lavers, and Luke Knipe and contribute today!

Used cooking oil can be recycled year-round. For more information on year-round drop-off locations, visit the Pima County Regional Wastewater Department's website or call 740-6500.

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Drop off sites

  • East - O'Reilly Chevrolet
  • 6160 E. Broadway, one block west of Wilmot Road
  • Midtown - Ward 3
  • 1510 E. Grant Rd., between Vine and Cherry avenues
  • Northwest - Pima County Industrial Wastewater Control
  • 5025 W. Ina Rd., 1/4 mile west of I-10
  • Town of Sahuarita
  • 375 W. Sahuarita Center Way, Park and Ride parking lot
  • South - City of Tucson Water Plant No. 2
  • 1102 W. Irvington Rd., I-19, exit west on Irvington Rd.
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