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March 23, 2011

Drive a Little Greener with G-Oil

5w_30 As the month of April approaches, and with it Earth Day, the focus of the Blog begins to shift to the green side of the spectrum.  We'll be featuring lots of eco-friendly products and tips in the coming 30 days or so, and the first of those is Green Earth Technologies, who is already a leading manufacturer and marketer of Green products.  This month they announced a partnership with the EPA's Design for the Environment (DfE) Program, touting the environmental, technological, and efficiency benefits of their products.

The product (or products, more accurately) in the spotlight for this initiative is called G-Clean, which, as the name implies, is a line of cleaning products.  I know, I know - this is an automotive blog.  Why am I telling you about the stuff you should use in your pressure washer?  Well, the answer is this company's flagship product:  G-Oil, an environmentally safe, biodegradable engine oil. 

Yeah, I said that.  Is it great?  Could be... but as always, I have opinions.  Read on.

According to their website, G-Oil is "the world's first and only American Petroleum Institute's (API) "SM" Certified bio-based motor oil.  We blend nature's American grown base oils (domestically sourced beef tallow) with nanotechnology to provide superior performance protection during the maximum oil change intervals recommended by vehicle manufactures while meeting or exceeding requirements." 

Now when I'm not busy with blogging and automotive marketing, I am a bit of a science fiction fan, and I must admit that any engine oil that uses Nanotechnology is already going to be a product of great interest to me - but never fear, I'm sure these aren't the evil self-aware "grey goo" sort of nanobots.  In fact, I'm reasonably certain they're not nanobots at all, but simply nano-scale additives to aid in the oil's effectiveness.  No need to fear. 

As you can see, the oil's made from beef tallow, and that's sort of my sticking point.  It's a minor one, but it's there nonetheless.  For those who don't know, beef tallow is just rendered animal fat.  It's been used in a variety of applications, including McDonald's fry vats until 1990 or so (now they use vegetable oil).  It's now used widely as a lubricant, and as a component of bio-deisel.  I'm really not surprised that it's used here, but I do wish they'd clarify where it came from.

Here's my minor point of contention:  I happen to be a vegetarian.  Now... that's my choice.  I'm judgement-free, honest.  It's not the fact that they're using an animal product that bothers me, per se.  The meat industry is very real and very profitable, and a lot of peoples' livelihoods depend upon it.  I don't begrudge them their livelihood, not at all.  It also produces a lot of waste in the form of by-products, and using those products rather than letting them go to waste in indeed a very green practice.   However... I am not a fan of mega-factory farms, as they're not very animal friendly, and not very eco-friendly either.  The fact that they don't offer any explanation for the source of their tallow other than "domestically sourced" sticks in my head.  I don't know precisely where they're getting this tallow from, and that'll nag at me.  Is that going to keep me from buying the oil?  Probably not... but it'll make the decision a little harder, and will lead to a little more research on my part for sure.

On the upside - several Ask Patty clients are offering this oil in their bays right now, including Lex Brodie's Tire on Hawaii.  Good for you, gang!

Check out Green Earth's full line of products here, and if anyone at Green Earth can enlighten me as to precisely where that beef tallow's sourced from, please do so in the comments!

Kaeli Gardner, Inc.
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