DALLAS, Texas—They’re in the middle of a nationwide tour. Thirteen Dartmouth College Students are teaching people across the U.S.:
“The feeling of running on veg,” said Meegan Daigler of The Big Green Bus.
That’s their way of saying running on waste vegetable oil.
“It actually contains 290 gallons of waste vegetable oil which we pick up at restaurants and hotels from around the country,” said Morgan Curtis of The Big Green Bus.
The first question in many people’s mind is: ‘Does this thing give off any type of odor?’ Sure enough, people driving behind the bus can smell French fries, catfish, and even Chinese food.
“It smells fantastic,” said Curtis.
Besides the fried food smell, running on veg is environmentally friendly.
“It’s a lot closer to carbon neutral than traditional fossil fuels,” said Curtis.
High school chemistry tells you, that’s a good thing.
And everything you need to travel across country is on-board the bus, including a filtration station that cleans the gunk.
“When we pump oil out of dumpsters it sometimes there are floating French fries, things like that,” said Curtis.
The bus can’t start with vegetable oil. It uses diesel to warm up then ten minutes later, switches over to veg.
“You can’t even feel the difference,” said Erik Skarin of The Big Green Bus.
The cross country trip was running smoothly, until their air conditioner went out a couple days ago.
“It’s pretty hot,” said Skarin.
Bad timing as afternoon temps are well past the century mark in North Texas.
“I’ve never been someplace so hot in my entire life,” said Daigler.
While in Dallas in the middle of a heat wave, the students had the chance to teach kids all about their bus and ways to be kinder to the earth.
“You get that first impression of like ‘they’re just a kid they don’t know very much,’ but then you dig a little deeper, and they pick up on a lot of stuff,” said Skarin.
And people across the country have picked up a thing or two about the Big Green Bus then afterwards, you get hungry for chicken strips and French fries.