Business / In Brief • Oct. 22, 2014

Maui company using biodiesel for vessels

Aqua Adventures Maui has switched to biodiesel for its vessels, Pacific Biodiesel announced.

The company that has been producing biodiesel in Hawaii since 1996 used to deliver fuel to boats in Maalaea Harbor many years ago, but greater on-road demand on the company’s limited production made it hard to keep up with boat companies’ needs, the news release said.

Aqua Adventures had been using biodiesel previously and is the first boat company to fuel with Pacific Biodiesel under a new permit.

“Now that we have the larger capacity and advanced technology that produces the highest quality biodiesel in America, we are expanding into high-value tourism markets with customers who care about the environment and want to attract eco-conscious visitors to their activities,” said Bob King, president and founder of Pacific Biodiesel.

Biodiesel is produced from recycled waste vegetable oil and is safe for all diesel engines. It can be used pure, as Aqua Adventures Maui is doing, or blended at any percentage with petroleum diesel, the news release said.

Pacific Biodiesel will be holding a Biodiesel Tech Talk at the Maalaea Harbor Ferry Building from 1 to 3 p.m. today. Lunch will be provided, and King will present information on Pacific Biodiesel’s fuel technology and how to integrate biodiesel into marine operations.

For more information on the tech talk and to RSVP, contact Beth Mathias at bmathias@biodiesel.com.

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Matson to plead guilty to spill charges

HONOLULU – The shipping company responsible for a molasses spill that killed more than 26,000 fish and other marine life in Hawaii will plead guilty to federal criminal charges.

Federal prosecutors on Tuesday filed two misdemeanor charges against Matson Terminals Inc. for last year’s spill of 1,400 tons of molasses.

The charges are for illegally releasing molasses without a permit into Honolulu Harbor on Sept. 9 and 10.

Matson says in a statement the company and the U.S. Attorney’s office have signed a plea agreement to plead guilty and pay penalties totaling $1 million. The penalties include money to support coral programs and invasive algae cleanups. The agreement is subject to court approval.

The company says it still faces potential civil claims by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state.