Home Production

A man was airlifted to hospital after he blew up his garage attempting to make biodiesel.

This new localism, the home production of any and everything, is bound to increase such events as ever more Heath Robinson machines are tried out. Will he go down in the health and safety statistics as a victim of greenery?

11 thoughts on “Home Production”

  1. Probably not, but expect a rash of new legislation making garden shed innovation virtually impossible. Of course this would then reduce the frequency of new ideas appearing, including new ideas to solve legislators’ favourite problems. But since when have they ever thought that far ahead.

  2. Why bother? Hardly compares with the 60,000 Peruvians dead from a cholera outbreak in 1991 after the greenies stopped the water being chlorinated.

    You’ve got to remember that the people who died from green idiocy are the victims of good intentions, so they don’t count. Like those killed by Che and Stalin and Mao.

  3. “expect a rash of new legislation making garden shed innovation virtually impossible”

    No need, since it’s already illegal to store fuel in any significant quantity at home. It’s also illegal to drive a car on home-made biofuel without paying the duty on it. Of course “no need” doesn’t “send a message” so we can expect a rash of eye-catching legislative initiatives to mask the noise of Gordon’s drilling*.

    *As was said somewhere on the blogosphere this weekend, when Gordon hits rock bottom, he starts drilling.

  4. If this chap had a bottle of meths in his garage it’ll undoubtedly be going on the NHS stats as alcohol related.

  5. Kay Tie… You, as a person, are allowed to manufacture 2,500 litres of “bio diesel” per year for your own use, without having to pay any tax or duty thereon.

  6. Here’s a helpful chap on the web:
    “Keep in mind that biodiesel making involves the use of several potentially very hazardous chemicals. Methanol can be absorbed rapidly through the skin and can cause blindness and death. Sodium hydroxide can cause severe burns and death. If these two chemicals are mixed during biodiesel production they can form sodium methoxide. This is an extremely caustic chemical that can cause a fatality if swallowed, inhaled or absorbed through the skin.

    ….Before making biodiesel at home make sure your workspace is generously and thoroughly ventilated to allow fumes to escape. Keep in mind that vapor cartridge respirators are not effective against methanol fumes. … Only a supplied-air system will do (SCBA — Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus) can protect you from methanol vapors.

    .. it is so important for you to have an emergency plan for getting medical help in case your homemade biodiesel production goes awry.

  7. Kay Tie: in the 1990s greenery was mercifully absent from Peru. the cholera outbreak started in the port of Chimbote and spread to other parts of the country where water treatment was deficient, such as poor shanty towns on the outskirts of Lima. There followed a decade and a half of enormous (for Peru) investment in basic infrastructure, driven by the now much-reviled President Fujimori, as a result of which you can nowadays drink the water in any largish Peruvian town (though I wouldn’t try it in the provinces). So, greenery not to blame this time.

  8. “if you want to claim that the rather Keynesian premises of the IMF”

    What, lowering taxes and cutting government spending to balance the budget? Not the most Keynesian and least neoliberal policy I’ve ever seen…

    Tim adds: Keynes didn’t particularly argue for high public spending, nor high taxes. His argument was much more about what you could do with imbalances in the levels of spending and taxation. You can have a near minarchist state and still use Keynesian demand management, run budget deficits to boost in a recession etc.

  9. If those countries don’t want the IMF’s money they don’t have to do what it says. The fact that they needed the money in the first place kind of says something about economic idiocy already.

    Spending on healthcare is all very well if you can afford it but it kind of assumes you’ve got the basics right first.

  10. Sodium hydroxide can cause severe burns and death.

    Jesus! You don’t want to be playing about with sodium hydroxide in your garage. That stuffs turns your flesh into soap.

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