In the US alone, 150 million gallons of diesel are burned every day, resulting in tonnes of carbon dioxide and black carbon being emitted into the atmosphere. And while there has been a surge in cleaner biofuels, they have been criticised for driving deforestation and competing with food crops for land and water.
But in New Jersey, US, entrepreneurs are combining American’s love of fast food with its need for fuel by collecting and filtering used cooking oil so it can be turned into biodiesel.
Russell Beard hits the streets of New York with workers from Grease Lightning, one of a number of companies now collecting used cooking oil from thousands of restaurants. He finds out how grease once illegally dumped and left to clog drains is now so sought after that even criminals are after it.
'earthrise' is an award-winning series exploring solutions to the environmental challenges we face today.
The programme takes an upbeat look at ecological, scientific, technological and design projects all around the world, from a group of Dutch architects who design stunning buildings made from waste materials, to an ingenious project that has dramatically cut rhino poaching on a South African game reserve.