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Living True: An Interview with Daryl Hannah

Thursday, November 30, 2006 by: Jared Rosen and David Rippe
Tags: biodiesel, Daryl Hannah, the Flip

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Daryl Hannah is an accomplished actress with films like Splash, Blade Runner, Steel Magnolias, Kill Bill Volumes 1 & 2 and many others to her credit. More importantly to Ms. Hannah is her commitment to the environment. She is a strong advocate for biodiesel, a clean, renewable fuel alternative for cars and other vehicles. In addition to supporting environmental causes and projects Daryl is a person who has already made the flip so we asked her how she puts her principles into action. "I drive a 1983 El Camino Diesel using one hundred percent biodiesel. It can run on straight vegetable oil with a small inexpensive modification and it can run on biodiesel, which is thinned with ethanol to be the same viscosity as diesel so that it can run through the engine.

"My car has what is called a closed-carbon loop. The same amount of carbon dioxide emitted from the tail pipe is the same as consumed by plants when they're growing, essentially causing no new greenhouse gases. It's basically lower in every other particulate toxin except for one. It's the cleanest fuel that's available today."

We wouldn't expect a movie star to hold such strong convictions, so naturally we asked what "drove" her to use such an alternative fuel choice. Daryl was direct. "Obviously, we have limited fossil fuel supplies. That's not even negotiable. Why rely on fossil fuels when we have sustainable energy technology and bio-fuels? Plus, bio-fuels are made from oil seed crops like soy, canola, rapeseed and mustard so using biodiesel is a way to support American farmers who grow those crops -- and support our economy. American farmers have been struggling for a long time, this is a way for them to earn a decent income and help the planet.

"The fact is that we've had the technology and the ability to produce cleaner burning non-toxic fuel for over a hundred and five years. Yet, our kids are still riding on school buses that are completely poisonous. The diesel engine was originally developed to run on vegetable oil. After Rudolph Diesel's mysterious death (he went missing on a business trip to England and was found floating in the English Channel) the diesel engine was converted to run on petroleum-based products rather than vegetable oil. So, the car industry went in another direction than the inventor of the diesel engine intended."

Since Daryl is so passionate about the environment we asked her what she was doing to champion the cause. "I'm doing everything I can to get information out there. I've been doing some green corresponding for "Good Morning America" about different issues like the importance of shopping at local farmer's markets, organics, and the difference between genetically modified foods and conventional and organic products.

"Information is the key. Once people have the information it empowers them. I think people are hungry for it and are open to it more than ever before. It's not so much the "crunchy granola hippy thing" associated with self-sufficiency anymore. It boils down to common sense and independence and self-determination.

"More and more people are realizing these things. I was just in the grocery store yesterday and a woman had seen one of the segments that I did on "Good Morning America." She was taking notes and asking me all sorts of questions because she's going to change her house to solar power. She was asking me what kind of car she should buy and stuff like that. It's an example that people are now realizing, 'Oh my god, I have real options.'"

We asked Daryl if the younger generation was open to being socially responsible? "That's something I'm optimistic about. I read some articles that say the youth of today are apathetic and I beg to differ. The kids that I come across don't even question those kinds of choices, they just make them, because to them it's, 'Why would I do something else? Why wouldn't I try to eat healthy food or drive a fuel-efficient car so I don't get gouged at the pump? Why would I poison the environment?' I meet inspiring kids on a regular basis. They're not even trying to be altruistic; to them it's just straightforward common sense."

Read more at TruthPublishing.com, where you can purchase this book and learn how to turn your world around with essays on love, relationships, health, business and the environment by philosophers, doctors and actors. Anyone can make the Flip! Check out the contest at TheFlip.net, and submit your own true story of personal transformation. Itís your chance to inspire someone else to make The Flip by sharing how you changed your world -- and you could win a Personal Transformation Library with over 65 books, CDs and DVDs!

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