Grease for Good

By: Sara Innamorato

Pittsburgh Oil Recycling Gets a Makeover.

GTECH Strategies and Greenlight Biofuels partner to boost ReFuel Pgh
ReFuel Pgh, a program run by Growth Through Energy and Community Health (GTECH) Strategies, up with Greenlight Biofuels for the collection and recycling of waste cooking oil to support sustainable community development activities in Pittsburgh. 100% of the volume of oil collected is processed in Pennsylvania for biodiesel, which has approximately 80% less CO2 emissions than petroleum diesel.

Any facility that produces waste cooking oil can have its oil collected by Greenlight Biofuels, an industry leader in the waste management sector, and choose to donate a portion of its waste oil rebate to support ReFuel Pgh’s education and outreach activities in communities.

 ReFuel Pgh offers public collection services for free and to expand the service area through this new partnership. Since 2010 ReFuel Pgh has collected over 15,000 gallons of oil from 56 different partners, including: local restaurants; festivals, such as The Three Rivers Arts Festival; special events, like church fish fry; and public drop off locations. Revenue from collections has gone towards funding residential drop off bins as well as outreach programs focused on educating the public on alternative fuel from waste streams.

 “Not only does this new partnership expand the reach and capacity of ReFuel Pgh – it allows restaurants of all sizes, institutions, stadiums and national chains the ability to achieve a community benefit and an environmental win with their waste stream,” said Andrew Butcher, GTECH’s CEO.“How could you not be excited about a win-win-win scenario?”

Youth from Operation Better Block’s Junior Green Corp. program toured the Greenlight Biofuel center in Braddock, PA. They learned about green jobs and alternative fuels.

One of the first establishments to sign onto the ReFuel Pgh program is Sonoma Grille, a member of the Big Y Group, which includes: Perlé, Seviche, Talara, and Nola on the Square.

 “At Sonoma we make a conscious effort to do things the right way,” said Jeff Caulkins, Sonoma’s general manager. “In this case, a local company with good peoplegiving us the chance to do something good for the environment. It wasn’t a hard choice for us.”


Establishments can visit to learn more and sign up for service.



Greenlight Biofuels is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Greenlight Energy Resources, a diversified renewable energy business with divisions in four targeted renewable energy sectors: biodiesel, wind, solar and wave. The are headquartered in Virginia, with collection activities throughout the Mid-Atlantic and a local depot in Braddock. For more information about Greenlight Biofuels, please visit


Check out more press coverage in the Post Gazette article.

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