Starting this week, The COMET is now using a B5 bio-diesel blend in its 39 large transit buses.  This is another initiative at The COMET to help improve the air quality of Richland and Lexington Counties and reduce its carbon footprint. Biodiesel is vegetable-oil based, renewably resourced, less polluting, and biodegradable.  In some cases, the fuel smells like french fries or barbeque! 

B5 Biodiesel is a low-level biofuel blend consisting of up to 5 percent biodiesel and 95 percent petroleum diesel fuel. The blend is legally classified as a diesel fuel, which eliminates any operational or potential warranty concerns users may have. B5 biodiesel when properly handled will perform just like diesel, and the fuel has been approved for use by most diesel automobile and truck manufacturers, including Cummins, the engine that powers The COMET’s diesel buses. Compared to petroleum diesel, Biodiesel is safer, biodegradable, and produces less air pollutants than petroleum-based diesel.  The COMET is studying ways to try B20 biodiesel, which would increase the ratio of biodiesel to 20% based on the successful incorporation of B5 biodiesel into the fleet. 

The biodiesel fuel is coming from Petroleum Traders Corporation and James River Solutions based on vendors from the South Carolina State contract. 

“Public transportation is a cornerstone of community vitality, sustainability, and environmental stewardship. Since 2014 when The COMET started using propane, it is the intent to uphold these qualities through our commitment to sustainable practices, leadership principles, and accessibility” states John Andoh, Executive Director/CEO of The COMET.  

About The COMET

The COMET is a service of the Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority and provides countywide public transit services on 38 fixed routes, two ReFlex services, vanpool service, subsidy programs with Uber and Lyft and DART ADA complementary paratransit service throughout Richland and western Lexington Counties. The COMET transports approximately 2.8 million passenger trips a year on a fleet of 81 buses and vans. Transit services are provided under contract with Transdev Service, Inc of Lombard, Illinois.

For additional The COMET information, please call (803) 255-7100, TDD/TTY: 711 through the relay service, email: [email protected] or visit www.catchthecomet.org. Catch The COMET…We Will Take You There!

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