Sam Massa

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/06/art.massa.irpt.jpg caption=”Sam Massa, 18, started a business to convert diesel-powered vehicles to run on vegetable oil.”]

Don’t look away. We are going to talk about oil prices. But it’s positive, I promise. This “pain at the pump” story starts with a dyslexic student who had a hard time in high school.

Sam Massa had such a hard time with dyslexia, he eventually dropped out of high school to get his GED and pursue his independent spirit of entrepreneurship. He started small with mowing lawns then he started a DJ company, eventually making enough money to buy his dream car — a yellow Hummer.

Gasp! Here comes the gas prices part — Sam couldn’t afford the gas to keep up the Hummer. So, he started a business, Massa Green Enterprises, to convert diesel engines to run on veggie oil. He tours with his Hummer across the country, filling up with leftovers from fast food restaurants. How will the story end? Sam, 18, hopes it will get more people talking about veggie oil prices.

Update: Watch the CNN.com Live interview

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78 Responses to Sam Massa

  1. Susan Folwell says:

    I’m Sam’s very proud mom, and I just have one question for him: is there a time on your uber-busy calendar for dinner with mom soon? A comment for parents: I remember when Sam was 3 years old, I’d take him for car rides and he would describe inventions and gadgets that he had ideas for in his head. Even then, his mind was busy and imaginative, coming up for newer, better ideas for toys and household items. He talked non-stop to me about what he wanted to invent, and I’m convinced to this day that having someone listen to him and take him seriously helped fuel and nurture his creativity even way back then. Sam, you rock!

  2. WebsiteWaves Blog says:

    Way to go Sam. Lots of people have ideas but most people go their whole lives never acting on them. You probably had 20 or more ideas going around in your mind when you launched this business. What made you take action with this one? What words of advice can you give to others for choosing which idea to pursue? Thanks in advance.

  3. Francine McKelvie says:

    Way cool Sam…congratulations…keep moving forward…you remind me of Lewis in the Meet the Robinsons movie :o) And to Sam’s Mom…I’m in total agreement with you…encouragement and love are powerful tools in raising our children…so thrilled for you and your boy…Mom from Canada

  4. Kelly says:

    Just to prove that education isn’t everything! You’re amazing. I’m 22 years old and almost finished my degree in Canada and just want to thank you for being such an amazing person. You acted uponyour thoughts which so many of us do NOT do, and I hope the world will be able to learn from you. Congratulations!

  5. Liliya says:

    Sam, you do know that vegetable oil is made from khhm- vegetables that other folks may, but do not consume- Right? So, in other words, while you are doing a good deed by re-using cooked oil from restaurants, you are also promoting the concept of turning potential food into diesel fuel. I’d seriously re-read your business plan before promoting the entrepreneurial spirit of one who is 18 and entertaining to the eye. Otherwise, props to you for having an idea and moving forward with it.

  6. jollyroger says:

    Theres no need to convert a diesel engine to run veggie oil.Diesel engine are designed to run oil!We have been running SVO in our truck and boat diesel engines for over 4 years.We clean our oil down to 1/10th of 1 micron and 100% dewater the oil with a design of our own at room temp,

  7. Sam E. says:

    That’s a fine mission, Sam, but I have one question: What is any person claiming to be sensible or responsible or conscientious in any capacity doing within 100 yards of a Hummer? Whether it runs on traditional diesel, biodiesel or the cold water of crumbled ice caps, no other vehicle so epitomizes Americans’ up-yours celebration of overconsumption. Keeping Hummers on the road isn’t just lousy environmental practice, it’s terrible for the morale of those of us who recognize selfish voracity when we see it.

  8. Chester says:

    It is great that he has started his own business and is doing well at it. But his solution to not being able to afford the gas to power the Hummer is outrageous. He should have purchased a small car and converted that to run on used vegetable oil. America’s energy crisis is happening because in large part due to poor choices in transportation methods and we should be conserving not continuing to over use.

    Sam, take the gas from your hummer and use it to power multiple small cars. Your ingenuity and business sense could help reshape transportation as we know it today instead of finding ways around paying at the pump.

  9. eric says:

    sam hello i would be interested in how to do this .and the availability of the oil. its not as though you just pull up to burger king and fuel up .there has to be a catch and it isnt easy for me to stop work or what ever and hunt down oil .please advise, id love to hear from you .. thank you eric markey

  10. Ed in Delaware says:

    Excellent vision Sam! My children and future grand children wish you much success in your adventure to improve not only our environment but hopefully improve our way of thinking as a society. Best wishes, stay committed to your dreams!

  11. Cheryl says:

    Here’s the problem with using Vegatable oil. The same as what happened with corn based ethynol. Using crops as fuel drives up demand , which drives up the price of ALL consumer products made with that resource.
    Using Vegatable oil for fuel is no different.

  12. Tom says:

    I am really not sure what the celebration here is about. Is it about your ingenuity? Your entrepreneurship? Is your conversion of a hummer to vegetable oil supposed to be encouraging to Hummer owners out there who are trying to figure out if they can still afford one of the most opulent and disgusting status symbols of American culture? I guess that I am saddened what you represent.

  13. gabe says:

    Good for you Sam. Chalenges in life are just that chalenges and all we have to do is overcome them. My son is Dyslexic and I plan on sharing with him your experience. It sounds like your mom was the driving force behind your success so good for her!

  14. sean says:

    How can I convert my car over to use veg. oil??? Can u point me in the right direction please.

  15. Matt says:

    Sam I think your hard work and innovative ideas are a great example for young people like myself across America. I want to seriously convert my car to vegetable oil-gas prices are too high and it’s time to use better resources. How do I convert my car to be powered by vegetable oil?

  16. Lindsay says:

    I should know more about vegetable oil for gas than I do, but I was wondering. I know that when we did that at school it wasn’t too hard, and obviously it is working for you, but why isn’t everyone doing it? What is the downside?

  17. Sam says:

    Hey, my name is Sam too!
    Great idea, except of course the one problem. Ethanol as an additive is already making food prices soar. While I think your idea is a great one, it would be nice if we could use something that didn’t hurt the world’s population. Oh well, it would also be nice if I could win the lottery without even playing.
    Sam

  18. paul says:

    When will people realize that bio-fuels are not going to be the saving grace that the media wants them to be. Despite the few advantages that they have over fossil fuels, they do in fact have many disadvantages. Has everyone already forgotten about the people who are starving in developing countries because they cannot afford the staple food products that once could. There is a finite amount of land in this world and these fuels are competing with precious cropland that is used to grow food or, in the case of Brazil, new cropland is developed by cutting down virgin rainforests so that they can extend their sugarcane plantations. Consequently, the price of most commodities has increased across the board. Many of the world’s people depend upon oils like palm, vegetable, etc. for their daily calorie intake and are starving as a result. I remember reading somewhere that one village has turned to eating dirt cookies (an appetizing mixture of lard and dirt) because they simply cannot cope with these higher costs. Also, some of these fuels (like ethanol) yield a lower net energy than gasoline does. Therefore, more fuel is required to get the same amount of energy that a smaller amount of gasoline provides. This means that you will either need a larger fuel tank or you will suffer a lower driving range. More fill-ups, equals more money. Despite the fact that these fuels emit less CO2, this advantage is offset by having higher NO emissions. Additionally, your car will be harder to start in the cold. I’m not condemning the search for alternative fuels. I’m just saying that there is not going to be an easy answer to our energy problem. Often if it sounds too good to be true, it is. The only reason ethanol and other bio-fuels are being pushed so hard on the public is because huge companies like GM and Monsanto have high paying lobbyists influencing politicians. The Bush Administration has already made ethanol a high priority without fully understanding the consequences to these actions. Does it really matter if you’re paying less at the pump, if you’re paying more at the supermarket?

  19. Brian - Minneapolis says:

    #1. Don’t buy a hummer. If that is your dream car, your wasting the CO2 reduction’s effort. Your making a statement that is shortsighted and out of touch. You’re saying “its ok, I can drive a hummer because its vegetable oil.” Not cool. Maybe take your ideas to a real green effort to look at the philosophy.
    #2. Vegetable oil, is a renewable but costly fuel. The turn around from agriculture is not efficient.
    #3. Think about other ways vegetable oil could be used to maximize efficiency and reduce waste, because obviously putting it into a hummer is not the right answer. Go online! Find out the real problems and be an advocate! You’re so close but you need a better understanding. Sorry Sam’s very proud mom, dinner is going to have to wait.
    #4. Yes, good work trying something innovative, its been done before but it takes a good business spirit to achieve…etc.

  20. Craig Holcomb says:

    Sam, I’ve been looking into converting a vehicle to veggie oil use for a long time as well as starting a business converting vehicles. I’m 54 and very impressed with your accomplishment and I have a few questions for you. There are federal and state regulations concerning fuels for vehicles driven on their roads as well as EPA requirements for safe emissions. How long have you been in business and how are you complying with these regulations? I know the feds and states use fuel taxes to pay for roads and repairs (although the roads in my area look like a lot of that money has not made it all the way through to the repair crews) and I believe they have requirements for tax collections on alternatively fueled vehicle usage. Congratulations on your business venture, I wish you much success as our country needs as many fuel alternatives as we can pursue.

  21. Tanya Tweeton says:

    I am most interested on how you are converting the food to oil. Did you experiment? Read up on fuels? Where did you discover the technique ?
    If this can really work with all cars (and hopefully soon, ) I hope we can put Saudi Arabia out of business!

  22. Debbie says:

    Hi Sam, I went to your website and I’m not a bio or energy savvy person so this is very new to me?

    1. Can you make regular cars like a Toyota, Honda or Ford run on vegetable oil too? If so why has this not happened yet?

    2. Do you work for the government in any way?

    3. What about regular vegatable oil from the grocery store, does this have to be cooked and used before it works or can you use the regulare uncooked oil?

    4. How long did it take to invent this? Are you contracted with other dealerships or plan to expand in the Southern part of the United States, such as Florida?

    5. The main question are your prices really better than the gas pump prices?

    Sincerely,

    Debbie

    Indyaari@yahoo.com

  23. robert saint amour says:

    i ran my sailboat’s diesel engine with used oil from my restaurants for years, when i would get to a wharf people would ask if i was having fish and chips
    but the sad truth is that if all the restaurants in my valley of 75,000 people were to contribute their used oil it would barely run a dozen vehicles
    and the even sadder truth is the ignorance your president exhibits when he pushes for the growing of corn for fuel, burning food for your hummer is ridiculous and devastating for so many reasons
    the much simpler solution is to use less and getting rid of the hummer would be a good start

  24. Eli, Oklahoma says:

    So what!

    There are 100’s of web sites that tell you how to convert diesel engines to burn cooking oil.

    “veggie oil” is not an answer to the problem.

    Maybe he should have bought a more efficent car.

  25. JPK says:

    All efforts to find alternative fuel sources need to be encouraged. As noted bioethicist J. Grabowski testified before Congress during last month’s open hearings on alternative energy, all current options (hydro-electric, modified cold fusion, soylent green, etc) show promise. We as a country need to stay on this path.

  26. Rich says:

    “…why isn’t everyone doing it? What is the downside?”

    In a world filled with starving people, it promotes using food for fuel, when there is more than enough actual fuel in the ground to power the car, provide employment and paychecks to people who need both, and let farmers farm food for human–not vehicle–consumption.

  27. Corbett says:

    I know that poor Sam has already been beaten up for his poor choice of vehicles. So I would like to add some clarity by saying that everyone who has picked on him is… exactly right!

    Buying a Hummer is not an achievement, its a failure. The vehicle is so poorly conceived that even its own manufacturer doesn’t like it anymore and is thinking of discontinuing it.

    I also do not completely buy that the young man was able to begin a $50K+ business by the sheer power of his independent spirit and lawn mowing skills. The story conveniently ignores the fact that none of that lawn mowing money went to rent or probably even start up fees, which are the main barriers to most new companies.

    Really, this is a story of kid from an affluent family in an affluent neighborhood who was able to become a little more affluent and then celebrated himself with an incredibly arrogant and ignorant purchase. I am glad that he is able to make himself feel better by siphoning vegetable oil.

    But in the end I don’t know how anybody who cannot already afford to purchase a Hummer and convert it to a Bio Diesel is supposed to find inspiration from this story.

  28. Patrick says:

    I attend medical school at Columbia University. I must say, you are truly the ideaology of what it use to be an innovative American who makes a difference.

    Most Americans spend all their time trying to achiever higher educational degrees, but at the end of the day the contributions are only small and community related. Yours is one that the entire world can benefit from.

    You are truly….an example of Howard Hughes!

    Congrats with this, and it will work, sell, and make many people happy!!!

    Pat

  29. Stephan says:

    Wow, if I knew this I would have purchased the Yellow Hummer I have always dreamed of. Sam is a true inspiration to all of us who are looking for alternatives to the high gasoline prices and energy costs. Maybe you should hold a conference for all of the oil execs who claim that they are not really making huge profits and they all of the surplus revenue goes back into the technology to develop the fuel. Yeah, right, how much money did most ot those execs make last year? Sam, you are my hero. Thanks to reading your story I am inspired to learn more about what I can do to reduce energy costs and save in my own home.
    You rock Sam!

  30. Details Missing says:

    How is it that an 18 year old with a “DJ company” can afford a $40,000 SUV? In any case, this is a bad idea. You don’t really want a ‘compensation’ vehicle, do you? It just makes people laugh behind your back.

  31. NCNOTSOGREEN says:

    This is an idea that caught on in NC. One problem. The State, which has imposed one of the highest gas taxes in the Nation, started arresting people for not paying their fair share of gas tax. The movement has gone underground as advertising that you are running on french fry oil will get unwanted attention from Smokey the Bear and Company. We need a ground roots legislative movement to de-criminalize cleaner, cheaper alternatives to gasoline. With the current crisis, the timing is perfect to call on the politicians to put their votes where their rhetoric is.

  32. Teresa says:

    Kudos young man. Can you convert my toyota to run on vegetable oil?

  33. Brian Simmons says:

    Without a doubt, you have changed the lives of millions of people across the world. Your ideas have inspired many to do the right thing. If you were running for president I would vote for you. Just in this one example you show your skill for immediate problem solving. It will be so much easier to wake up in the morning now. Thank you!

  34. Lee says:

    Sam, You ROCK!! As to the others who are making negative comments about 1. The Hummer,
    and 2. Using vegetable oil (Food as fuel)

    I’d like to say, EDUCATE YOURSELF PEOPLE! THe Hummer H1 gets very good fuel mileage for a truck of it’s class. You would be surprised to find that they regularly get 16MPG. And this is a DIESEL, not a Gas engine. Much cleaner. And by him burning USED Vegetable oil, he is not contributing to pollution.

    As for the Vegetable oil (Fuel for food) he’s NOT USING NEW OIL!! It’s USED!! No longer useful as a food! It will now serve TWO purposes, one for food, the other for oil! Using fresh vegetable oil for fuel is stupid, and that’s NOT what he’s doing. These whacknut environmentalists are never happy, no matter how hard you try,

    As to the idiot that said he should get rid of the Hummer and power multiple cars, hasnt’ done the math. the manufacture of all these crappy little cars is far more damaging to the environment than one Hummer that will last far, far longer.

    Take a look at the environmental damage wreaked by the PRIUS!
    Look it up.

  35. Cheree Culpepper says:

    Congratulations Sam and way to go. If more people saw obsticles the way you do we would be better off by far. You saw a problem and decided to DO something rather than sit around and gripe. I am surprised at the number of negative comments here. I sincerely hope you don’t let those narrow minded, negative individuals, or their comments concern you. The truth is no one has found an ideal solution at the moment, but it is the search for solutions and the brain storming of ideas that will help to discover better and better alternatives. I must say I also find it unfortunate that anyone here would criticize you for having a hummer. It is the desire for nice things that helps motivate individuals toward their goals. As long as someone is willing to WORK for what they want they should certainly be allowed to have whatever they can afford. Enjoy the fruits of your labors and I wish you the best in your business ventures. It will be through the creative efforts of young men and women like you that we will hopefully find better and greener ways to live.

  36. Worth Repeating says:

    I hope the dude takes his Hummer and runs over some of the sulking commentators like: Brian – Minneapolis!!

  37. Jeff says:

    Way to perpetuate the problem, Sam! Short-sighted thinking at its finest.

  38. David says:

    For those of you ripping apart the Hummer, please keep in mind that you should also include any Excursion, Expedition, Escalade, Suburban, Corvette, Dually Truck, Land Rover, etc. At least with the Disesel engine you can look at alternative fuels unlike the regular gasoline engine that you can’t.

    So the big question…if it only costs $1.50 or less (using veggie oil that would have gotten thrown out) to run a Hummer…then why do you hate it? Can’t be the fuel.

  39. Cliff aka Injunfarian says:

    people PLEASE EDUCATE YOURSELVES. I myself am a proud owner of an H1 and as Lee said they get great fuel economy for its class yet functionality wise they are in a class of their own.

    Also by using veggie oil(new or used) in a diesel engine not only greatly reduces pollution but strengthens the local economy as well. I do realize that new oil could be used to feed people but do you realize just how many farmers are PAID by the government to not farm their own land due to lack of demand for various produce? Not only will burning veggie oil put farmers back to work but it will also allow tax payers money to goto other causes.

    So in this harsh time of high gas prices, low economy and high pollution, burning veggie oil is the winner across the board.

  40. Inflation says:

    Way to drive up food cost Sam!!

  41. Not Worth Repeating says:

    People who wish for other people to be physically injured because they don’t agree with them belong in jail. Or in church…

    And the name calling… Shouldn’t you all just go back to work?

    A bad idea is a bad idea. This kid is entitled to make and learn from his own mistakes. Based on these comments I’m guessing that participating in this interview will be one of many…

  42. james says:

    Once again I am dumbfounded by some of the people who frequent this site. An 18 year old kid decided to do something other than drugs and crime and try to make something of himself and all any of you KNOW IT ALL types can do is slam him.

    The oil is USED as in NOT FOOD anymore. He is stealing food from no one and is actually recycling something. To all ye naysayers, I say know what you are talking about before you open your mouth.

    Just to irk you all, I am going to go purchase a HUMMER and convert it and my businesses entire fleet of OVER THE ROAD trucks the same. Instead of picking on one kid, you can now thank yourselves for the monster you have just created.

    BTW, god helps those who help themselves so the next time a third world country is starving to death because they threw out the farmers that knew how to make crops grow, ala MUGABE, or are to stupid do do something for themselves, dont blame an 18 year kid!

    James

  43. Martin says:

    Like Sam, I run a Hummer H1. It runs on diesel at a rate 14 mpg, which I can easily afford as my annual mileage is fairly low.
    However, I choose to run it on waste vegetable oil which my local restaurant would otherwise have to pay to have removed.
    Win-win for me and the restaurant as I see it.

    Selling my H1 to get a smaller vehicle wouldn’t reduce my motoring costs by much and would just put another vehicle on the road. Someone else would then be driving my Hummer, that’s all.

    ‘Green’ seems to have become a new religon, complete with its own zealots to instruct us on how to live our lives. I take as much notice of them as I do of other extremists.

    I’m proud to drive my Hummer, built in America, by American workers in American company (AM General)……and I wish I’d been able to achieve as much as Sam has done at his age!

  44. Brian - Minneapolis (I'll run u over WR!) says:

    I’m a sulking commentator…. Because I read through everyone’s comments and I found only 2-3 people really “get” the argument. Worth repeating, your really not.

    Having two small cars for multiple family’s is a better idea than one big vehicle for one person. And for the med student, get over yourself. You sound like a moron. Every contribution large or small to improve communities and livelihood is important.

    I think he has done a good job of capturing a market that has been around for a long time. Cheree Culpepper you are completely wrong, people have found ideal solutions but we don’t act on them. Ask a bio or mechanical engineer studying sustainable/renewable resources. We have answers but don’t have an infrastructure. Playing ignorant “The truth is no one has found an ideal solution at the moment” is wrong. And negative is different from scrutinizing.

    But vegetable oil is a small resource that will run out quickly. I’m thinking strategically and everyone who had the same ideas on here said a variant of mine as well. I agree with what he’s doing but people everyday blow his initiative out of the water and they don’t get credit. But he has done a good job! CNN picked up the story…

  45. Cmos says:

    While its great that we are moving away from fosil fuels- that fact is we are still burning oils and outputing noxious odors. Few studies have been done on the long term effects of burning vegitable oil.

    How about a hummer that runs on Hydrogen or solar? Then I’m impressed.

  46. Kevin, Hummer Owner says:

    Hey Hummer Haters,

    I have a H1 Hummer that runs on veggie oil too. So does my Dodge pickup truck. My Hummer burns less middle east terrorist oil than your hybrid. And, my Hummer helps in national disasters and snow emergencies. Where is your hybrid during such emergencies???

    There is no SINGLE answer to our middle east oil national emergency, but veggie oil is one of the many answers. At least we are not using middle east oil anymore. What are you doing besides complaining ??????????? Veggie oil prices range from free to half the price of diesel fuel.

    You can also just mix diesel fuel and veggie oil, you don’t have to install a heated veggie oil system. But, thanks, if you do run pure veggie in your diesel engine.

  47. Kevin, Hummer Owner says:

    The genius of the Hummer is that it get everybody so upset that is draws all kinds of attention to the veggie oil cause and the idea of using recycled veggie oil in diesel engines.

    It’s a genius marketing idea and that’s why I bought mine….

  48. Dan says:

    The ford pickup is the symbol of America. What is the MPG for an F350, how about a Chevy Yukon, what about a GMC Suburban? Anybody….its less than a Hummer, just ask around.

    You greenies are all dolts. good luck, and try travelling outside of the US sometime.

    What powers those electric cars…coal. Where is that electricity stored?…nickel batteries. Where is the nickel mined..? How often do the nickel batteries need replacing? What type of car do you drive? How far do you drive? People buy a prius and dry twice as fast, and four times as much and think they are still helping the environment. Pish posh, hypocrites.

    The only person who can say anything is the guy who rides a bicycle everywhere and grows his own food.

  49. Davon says:

    Great job Sam! I was always business minded at a young age too. I run http://www.awakeontime.net its a wakeup and reminder service. This is my 2nd company and I’m 25, I like to see others making sense of business at an early age. After all, we are the future moguls of America.

  50. Sheena says:

    No one should attack Sam because he bought a Hummer. Everyone celebrates their success in different ways. He is a bright young man and turned a negative into a positive—where do you find room to criticize that?
    I am very interested in gasoline alternatives, I would just be cautious if I were you, Sam, because big oil companies will do anything to keep lining their pockets and not yours.

  51. Melissa, Los Angeles says:

    I’m quite shocked at the negativity of the comments towards Sam. @ Corbett by the sheer fact if Sam was brought up in an affluent family and has the forethought to even think about how expensive it is to fill up his vehicle and actually do something about it is very much commendable. In a society of Paris Hilton’s – Sam is a gem! @ Sam’s mom Susan, you did a wonderful job raising such a bright son.

    @ the posters who are complaining that he’s using vegetable oil – it’s USED! What better way to recycle used restaurant oil!

    Don’t let the nay sayers bring you down Sam!

  52. Mike K. says:

    Sam,

    I nkow Sam personally and i’ll tell you that this kid is amazing! I only wish I had half his drive at 18 let alone 38! Good luck Sam. Talk to you soon.

    Mike

  53. Ground hawg hummer owner says:

    Great going Sam, keep running with your dreams.

    Too all the people slamming this guy for what he’s doing GET A LIFE.

    what do you all do with your waist oil. I bet the majority of you either put it in a land fill or down the drain. None of you have half the vision of this young man. If we were to stop pampering to your ever vocal needs this would be a much better planet.

  54. Alan says:

    To all of you pseudo environmentalists who never leave the city but claim to know everything about the environment, WAKE UP!

    I drive an H1 hummer that is desigend to last 500,000 miles. Many have gone beyond that and the highest know mileage is over 700,000 miles. It is over 91% made in the USA, the most of any vehicle. That is true sustainability and green “ness”. No radioactive mining, sending nickel to chain and back on a polluting freighter ship, etc like what is necessary for the PRIUS batteries!

    It can run on just about anything that burns, can go anywhere, and save lives by accessing stranded people in floods, disasters, etc. Look up the Hummer HOPE program. We just dont flaunt our good doings and crave media attention like the pseudo environmentalists.

    And, I’d like to see your “small car” or prius tow my farm equipment or even make it around my farm on my hilly gravel roads during a storm!! Some people have the need for capabilites besides going down to starbucks for a latte on a scooter. Most H1 owners don’t drive their trucks daily (like me a go to my farm and back once a week) and it pollutes a lot less than your PRIUS while it sits in our garages!

    Oh and as for biofuels starving the world…… have you driven or flown across the country lately? Did you notice how much fallow farm land we have???? times that by a gazillion around the world. Biofuels will only raise food prices very temporarily since it takes about two seasons to go from fallow to crops! And have you ever eaten switchgrass or Algae? Look it up. I know this stuff, I actually farm unlike you city “environemtalists” who only see and know the concrete jungle. It will give a whole new life to rural america and get them some voting power back. I can’t wait.

    And none of you “GREENS” seemed to give a crap until gas crested the $2.00 mark. Where were you guys 3 or 4 years ago? Maybe its the fact it hit your wallet? not that you are so concerned??

    Long live the true environmentalists—-farmers, hunters, and outdoorsmen!!! Kudos to Sam for beating the system!

  55. Corvette Owner says:

    Oh and to set one thing straight. Corvettes are very fuel efficient. All Corvettes from 84-present get 20 hmpg or better. My 99 gets 32 mpg at 75 mph and over 20 in the city. Even the new Z06 gets 26 hmpg making it the only supercar that does not cary gas guzzler tax. Corvette= better mileage than a camary….and a camary cant go 200 mph!

  56. b rad says:

    How can I make my nuclear power plant run on wind?

  57. Randy says:

    Too bad when the government outlaws vegetable oil for food, because it will be found in a Harvard study that it perpetuates obesity, vegetable oil will be illegal to use. They will say it’s for your own good, but we will really know that they want us back on crude from other countries so they can pocket the cash from the taxes we pay on the gasoline.

  58. H1 Environmentalist says:

    H1: 91% american made, no freightliners required
    Lasts more than 500,000 miles–sustainable
    Can go anywhere, tow 10,000 lbs, carry anything run on multiple fuels with little or no modification

    PRIUS: Nickel Batteries cause toxic waste in canada, are freighed to japan, then freighted back, only last 100,000 miles—not sustainable
    Can barely go on a dirt road, tows nothing, fits very little.

    True environmentalists: Farmers, Hunters, Outdoorsmen who live and breathe nature. Not stuck in a concrete jungle pretending to know about the environment.

    Way to go Sam! You are re-using a waste product and saving money at the same time. A true win win. Its a shame some people still don’t get it.

  59. Keith says:

    Congratulations Sam! You are only 18 and have accomplished getting your very expensive and RARE dream car and building your own business despite your handicap! You are self-motivated! You are self-reliant! You are inspiring! You are a thinker! And most importantly… you are a DOER! You have the entrepreneurial spirit and you will create jobs! You saw a problem and found your own solution and you are right… it works and causes no harm. Some people will stand in their own foolish way to keep from being helped.

    Now you are being exposed to the underbelly of our country and you will learn from it. Most people only THINK they know what they are talking about. Most people will always tell you what you CAN”T DO. As you can easily tell from the negative responses, most people are under-educated, mis-informed and over-opinionated while basking in their self-appointed sense of supremacy. These are the people who plaster their car with bumper stickers that in their totality simply state, “DUMB GUY INSIDE”. These same people will catapult a little known senator who served only 114 days to be President for no other reason than because he talks pretty. It is people like you, young Sam, that are the HOPE of America… certainly not him.

    You ROCK!! Keep on Truckin’!

  60. W.W. says:

    I have a 2006 HUMMER H1 Alpha with Duramax Diesel. It gets 16mpg mixed driving. It can do things an Escalade or an Excursion can only dream of. Those big SUVs only get 10mpg or worse. My HUMMER H1 Alpha is a Class III truck, NOT an SUV! and achieves 16mpgs. For green conscious drivers out there, get conscious about what a HUMMER H1 really is about and its capabilities and its true MPG before you try to sandbag these trucks- your lack of education on HUMMER H1s coupled with your non-sensical opinions made about them only serves to make you look uneducated, which you are, when it comes to AM General Hummers. The HUMMER H1- Truly Like Nothing Else!

  61. JJ says:

    Sam, I’ve read over 50 postings. Opinions vary. Some comments are positive and some negative. Some informed. Some ignorant. Al Gore is not the first US elected official to be awarded a Nobel Peace Prize. Recently there was President Jimmy Carter. At the turn of the century there was Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt’s thoughts ring with truth across the century and are worthy of your hearing. Those who have posted comments, pro or con of your efforts, may do well to hear them as well.

    Congratulations for being “in the arena” .

    Theodore Roosevelt in Paris in April of 1910 (Nobel Peace Prize awarded in 1906):

    It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

  62. Kyle Cragg says:

    I’ve known Sam personally since kindergarten and I am surprised by the amount of negative comments directed towards Sam. While he should be applauded for what he does, people still manage to find something negative to point out. His Hummer runs cleaner than a Prius Hybrid and he is reusing a waste product. I personally don’t see a problem with it.

  63. american high stand says:

    I am a teacher and I would wish having students like you. You just proved that there is another type of intelligence and it is not all about academic skills. Congratulations boy! http://www.americanhighstand.com/

  64. Jason says:

    Way to go Sam! I expect to see even greater innovative ideas from you in future. Personally, this skyrocketing oil price issue is literally giving me hair loss problems. What used to cost 2 bucks six months ago now cost 3 bucks! Its no wonder my stress level has shot through the roof, and, unfortunately, so has my crowning glory.

  65. ref says:

    Good on him. This young 18 year old could teach a lot of people about money. Hes probably done more than I have.

    And its good to see a young man concerned with the future and the environment.

    Ref Rud
    http://www.mortgage-home-refinancing.com

  66. Dennis Massa says:

    Congratulations, Sam! By jumping into the arena, you are making a difference. One aspect that hasn’t been emphasized in the blog is that this diesel fuel conversion technology is applicable to all diesel engines, from VW Golfs to 18 wheelers. With the worldwide trend to more diesel engines in passenger cars, alternate fuels of biomass origin, which do not add to the net carbon burden of the planet since their carbon source is the atmosphere itself, will assume greater importance in the years to come.

  67. Aunt Jan says:

    Sam…was so delighted to see that you have really continued with your dream of conversion fuels. I am encouraged that there are those out there who are truly concerned with fuel of the future. Using a waste product to do so, in my book, is terrific! I want to make sure that my children’s children and extended families of the future have access to fuel. It’s young people like you that restore my faith in the “younger generation”! We are all very proud of you!!! You have continued to show that you CAN find a way to succeed despite the hassles you have encountered trying to get through the “systems”. Keep up that courage to find a way…regardless of what you are told by others.

  68. hummeraddiction says:

    Way to go Sam give em he’ll and live the American dream. Dont let the Greenie weenies keep your H1 in the drive way. I’m proud to have you not on the idiot train with the global warming idiots.

  69. Amenico says:

    Hello Sam,
    Not suprised by the coverage. Excited that even CNN carried this story, Very exciting future. I can’t imagin that you read all of these blogs but if you do hello from New England. Let us know when you wanna visit New England again.

  70. Cheryl Belloli says:

    Good Job Sam!!! You are getting yourself out there and boosting your business. You are a genius. I have witnessed it first hand when you were in 6th grade and single handedly fixed the broken hot tub, pool and play station in the beach house spring break in Nags Head. Your Hummer comes in handy with tree removal after storms (I have video from Cragg’s). Just so the population knows you use the Hummer for business as well as personal. It is practical in it’s fuel usage and ability to perform and haul your equipment. I only wish you could convert my PIG of an Explorer (11 MPG city uggghhh). I look forward to all your future endeavors. More kids need to take chances and follow their dreams for a business. Imagine our country being more self sufficient. Now there is a concept.

  71. Dan says:

    I think the kid deserves a break.A H1 may or may not be the most green transport kind,but you have to give it to the kid .let as stand back and ask ourselves what other 18 yr olds are doin.most of them are so busy destroyin their lives let alone the environment.
    Keep the spirit kid
    dan

  72. Derek says:

    A HUMMER IS HIS DREAM CAR? Doesn’t this moron know that is why we have high gas prices due to obnoxious and pretentios vehicles like that? And I have been behind Mercedes converted to run on veggie oil, THEY STINK and pollute the air just as bad!

  73. morgan says:

    That is very creative! iIhave one question what made you think to use that substance? congradulations on your discovery and many more that will follow.

  74. keith mezeski says:

    sooo , this is one of the young people that rock ? rock what , peoples bank accounts . this thread starts on july 7th 2008 with a message from sams’ mom . here i am now , within a year of the first post , about to explain how this company has screwed over one of its clients , and seems to be failing . i bought a system from m.g.e. in july of last year , the nomad system from golden fuel systems . and had them install it . it has been nothing but problems . it dosen’t go over 1500 miles without a break-down of some kind . a hose bursting , a part malfunctioning , something . i’ve tried to contact them to resolve these issues , and now they seem to be running away . they have taken down their website , @ http://www.gomge.com , and have not answered their phone in weeks . i have contacted the better business bureau of Va. to try and resolve this , but things take time i guess . don’t fool yourself ! veg. oil does work as a fuel , we just need good people who know how to do these installs properly . sam is not one of them . if anyone wants to do this kind of install , please do alot of research on the subject , and then do some more . i went to a protest in the washington dc area , and thought i could get the install done while i was there . i wish i never did . at least not with “Massa Green Enterprises”. DO NOT TRUST THEM !!!!

  75. Nick says:

    Wow Keith how old are we? Not only are you illiterate and immature, you obviously dont know how to maintain your veggie system. Don’t be mislead by the previous comment, chances are all of the problems were user error. I had a system installed in my 02 powerstroke by Sam and it has been nothing short of amazing to me.In fact, I know a good number of people who have kits installed in their daily drivers who have had absolutely no problems at all. Sam is a genius and does outstanding work, im pretty sure the kid could do anything.

  76. shannon says:

    sam, im privelaged to have met you, your are a great person to be around,your an genius, your ideas will have you driving your favorite, hummers, i enjoyed the brief conversation about your water skiing, etc, you truly are a king, (press on) im the lady in alabama ,late shift, where you stayed with the hummer club, this past week end in april, pure genius, and what you have overcome, and humble :at that, and what a mechanic u are, God bless you, as He has with your talents just a great genuine guy

  77. keith mezeski says:

    got one question for you nick . are they still , “authorized dealers” of the golden fuel systems ? before you answer , go look at http://www.goldenfuelsystems.com and tell me if you can find their name on the site . they have a list of all the people they work with to handle their equpt. . they were there once , but not any more . if you got your truck working , good for you . your one of the lucky ones . i’ve found others that have had their problems with what M.G.E. has given , and taken . and as far as it all being user error , they matched a 50 psi. hose to a pump that generates over 80 ? and thats just one of the issues . i was no mechanic , but according to them , i didn’t need to be . buyer beware

  78. Pingback: Big Bear’s big heart « The Brat Goes Green

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