CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO - Waste oil from fleet vehicles at the City of Cape Girardeau is being filtered and burned to heat the fleet maintenance area and the recycling processing facility, according to the City blog. Each time vehicles are sent in for maintenance, technicians collect the oil for filtering. The used oil is stored in either 500 or 1,000-gallon tanks.

"For smaller vehicles such as pickup trucks we can collect as much as five quarts per vehicle, or up to 30 quarts for larger vehicles such as dump trucks," said fleet coordinator Mike Schott.

One waste oil furnace in the recycling center has been in use since Dec. 2007, while two waste oil heaters in the fleet shop have been in used since Dec. 2009. The City has burned nearly 7,000 gallons of waste oil for heating, all of which was internal used oil created by the city, according to Schott.

The City is also collecting used motor oil from the general public, a program that began in February. "So far we have collected right at 40 gallons from the general public. We expect this number to increase as the public becomes more educated and aware of this opportunity to dispose of its used motor oil," Schott said.

Schott stated that gas furnaces were used before to the waste oil burning furnaces, and are still used as backup or supplemental heat.

The City operates more than 1,000 vehicles and pieces of equipment, according to its website.