Hot Grease

By Joseph L. Murphy, Iowa Soybean Association

Set in Houston, Texas in the shadow of the nation's oil industry, “Hot Grease” tells the surprising story of how the biodiesel industry is turning a worthless raw material — spent kitchen grease — into a renewable energy source capable of fueling cars, buses and trucks. The documentary gives an inside look at the environmentally beneficial industry built around kitchen grease and soybean oil.

  Submitted photo: Jason Lawrence with Amerigreen (far right) moderated a panel on the documentary at the National Biodiesel Conference with National Biodiesel Board communications manager Jessica Robinson (second from right), director/producers Jessica Wolfson (center) and Paul Lovelace (left), and cinematographer Andrew Miller (far left).

Submitted photo: Jason Lawrence with Amerigreen (far right) moderated a panel on the documentary at the National Biodiesel Conference with National Biodiesel Board communications manager Jessica Robinson (second from right), director/producers Jessica Wolfson (center) and Paul Lovelace (left), and cinematographer Andrew Miller (far left).

Recently, the National Biodiesel Conference featured a session with the filmmakers who premiered “Hot Grease” at the prestigious DOC NYC film festival before its debut on the Discovery Channel last November. The feature-length documentary tells the story of biodiesel’s rise and the industry fight for survival in the face of numerous public policy challenges. The producers spent countless hours documenting the experiences of biodiesel entrepreneurs in Texas, while advocates in Washington, D.C., come together to fight off a barrage of attacks from opponents more interested in protecting the status quo.

With insights from the innovators, entrepreneurs, environmentalists and grease collectors, "Hot Grease" follows the start of an industry as people are trying to carve out their piece of this modern-day “gold rush.”

You can watch "Hot Grease" on demand on the Discovery Channel and it is available for rent on iTunes and Google Play.