Biodiesel and Ethanol

'Big Easy' Rolls Out Red Carpet for Renewable Fuels

November 2011, Green Fleet Magazine - Feature

by Julie Sutor

Greenhouse gas reductions are getting the Hollywood star treatment in New Orleans with help from the Southeast Louisiana Clean Fuel Partnership (SLCFP) — one of the state’s two Clean Cities coalitions. SLCFP is partnering with independent film studio Second Line Stages to power film productions with biodiesel and ethanol.

“Film companies are pushing to incorporate sustainability into the production process wherever they can,” SLCFP Coordinator Rebecca Otte said. “Transportation can be a fairly easy place to do that.”

Ross Montalbano, fleet personnel with Hollywood Trucks, fills a truck with biodiesel. SLCFP, Golden Leaf Energy and Hollywood Trucks worked together to make film production in the Bayou State greener.
Ross Montalbano, fleet personnel with Hollywood Trucks, fills a truck with biodiesel. SLCFP, Golden Leaf Energy and Hollywood Trucks worked together to make film production in the Bayou State greener.

Production for a single film can involve the use of dozens of generators, hundreds of light- and heavy-duty vehicles, and thousands of gallons of fuel each day. In 2010, Second Line Stages Sustainability Director Diane Wheeler reached out to Otte to explore renewable fuel options with Hollywood Trucks, the largest film fleet in the South, and Golden Leaf Energy, a fuel producer and SLCFP stakeholder.

Otte worked with the fleet owners to research vehicle specs, warranties, ASTM fuel standards, and fuel properties, while Wheeler brought productions on board.

In September, Golden Leaf installed a biodiesel tank onsite at the studio, ready to dispense B-5. And, Second Line Stages is providing on-demand mobile fueling to keep the biodiesel flowing when productions move around the region. Second Line Stages and Golden Leaf will also be able to supply ethanol to any flex-fuel vehicles used during film productions.

The biodiesel will be cheaper than traditional diesel fuel, as it’s made from recycled vegetable oil by an organization that serves at-risk youth.

With support from SLCFP, Second Line Stages is keeping the renewables rolling by reaching out to other productions in the New Orleans area.

Get Involved with Clean Cities

Through the work of nearly 100 local coalitions, Clean Cities works to reduce petroleum use in U.S. Transportation. Clean Cities is an initiative of the U.S. Department of Energy.

For more information about SLCFP, visit


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