The original goal was to provide sustainable motor transportation for the Green School as a school project. Their vision grew beyond their expectations.
The Bio Bus story represents a nexus of education, community engagement, and social enterprise.
Bio Bus is a social enterprise that is run by students in the Green School in Bali, which is one of the most unique international schools and a leading holistic educational environment for children.
It was originally a service project of the 2015 graduating class of the Green school. Their original goal was to provide a legacy of sustainable motor transport, a biofueled “magic bus” for their school.
When they were working on this original project, they met Yayasan Lengis Hijiau – PT. Bali Hijau Biodiesel, an organization that recycles cooking oil into biodiesel (Hereinafter called as Lengis Hijau). The students learned a lot and worked hard collaboratively with Lengis Hijiau for their project.
The Bio bus team collects used cooking oil from local restaurants to create a renewable energy resource and in addition, the team produce natural soaps from glycerin, a byproduct of processing used cooking oil to produce biodiesel. The school Bio Bus pilot program was launched in June 2015, by creating a partnership with Lengis Hijiau and, at this point, the project and vision grew beyond their expectation.
Mr. Kyle King, a math teacher at the Green School has led and supported the Bio Bus team since from the beginning said, “The Bio Bus project is a great situation. Students are learning about chemistry, they are learning about mathematics, they are learning computer science. All those subjects happen together and are embedded in real experience for the students.”Starting from November 2015, the Bio bus project grew into a Green School program and also into a social enterprise driven by students to expand Bio Bus service.Currently, the Bio Bus team operate 3 buses that give thousands of rides each month to the community.
A sustainable solution created by collaboration between students in holistic education and forward-thinking specialists.
Through the bio bus initiative and by working collaboratively with Lengis Hijiau, the Bio Bus team recognized huge problems revolving around the use of used cooking oil In Indonesia.
With the absence of an appropriate waste management system for used cooking oil, hotels and restaurants had to dispose of it along with solid wastes – polluting fresh water and soil. What is worse, used cooking oil often finds its way onto the black market where it is cleaned and reused for cooking in small kitchens and roadside eateries. This poses serious health problems, particularly for poor people.
The Bio bus team launched the Grease Police Initiative, which is an outreach community program to raise awareness about the health risks of used cooking oil. The team gives their bio soaps away to local restaurants in exchange for their used cooking oil. They collected, on average, 250L of unpleasant oils every week in 2016 and the amount is continuously increasing.
Mr. Endra Setyawan, Director of Lengis Hijiau said, “They have been doing a lot. I trust them and I see from my experience how they are interested in this activity, and they give the best they can and they inspire others”