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Author Topic: Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?  (Read 11738 times)

Andie Freyer

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« on: 27/03/2011 00:30:02 »
Andie Freyer  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
I have been wondering about this question for a while:

Since motor oil comes from the ground, why cant I pour my used motor oil on the ground when i am done with it?

Andie Freyer

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 27/03/2011 00:30:02 by _system »


 

Offline Bill.D.Katt.

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #1 on: 29/03/2011 18:17:05 »
Uranium also comes from the ground, so would it be ok if we took enriched U and put it in someones backyard? The oil in your car is significantly different from oil straight out of the ground. Oil comes from deep in the ground where it doesn't get into groundwater or into the (biosphere) environment. There are many things that come from the ground that we don't want where we live.
 

Offline lightarrow

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #2 on: 29/03/2011 18:29:07 »
Since motor oil comes from the ground, why cant I pour my used motor oil on the ground when i am done with it?
Bill.D.Katt wrote correctly. If you pour motor oil on the ground, you will 1. drink it; 2. eat it through vegetables and animal's flesh and milk.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #3 on: 30/03/2011 17:19:40 »
If you dug a well, 1000 feet deep in your back yard, with casing to protect the uppermost layers, you could safely pour the used motor oil down the well.

Used motor oil is also pretty well contaminated with other engine components, metals, and etc. 

Petroleum oils have different structures, and lack the functional groups that natural biologic oils have.  Thus, they are poorly metabolised.
 

Offline lightarrow

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #4 on: 30/03/2011 17:36:04 »
If you dug a well, 1000 feet deep in your back yard, with casing to protect the uppermost layers, you could safely pour the used motor oil down the well.
What do you mean? If you don't cover all the walls and the bottom of the well with insulating (in the sense the oil cannot go through it) material, there will always be the risk of environment contamination.
 

Offline JMLCarter

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #5 on: 10/04/2011 21:58:26 »
So... where do they put all our used motor oil?
 

Offline Bill.D.Katt.

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #6 on: 10/04/2011 22:19:42 »
I believe they clean it, and then reprocess it.
 

Offline RD

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #7 on: 11/04/2011 16:55:20 »
I believe they clean it, and then reprocess it.

More is burned than reprocessed ...

Quote
The majority of that used oil is collected and sold as a combustible fuel, mainly used in power plants or industrial boilers.
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=can-oil-be-recycled
« Last Edit: 11/04/2011 16:57:03 by RD »
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #8 on: 11/04/2011 19:48:24 »
The main reason that this would be unkind to the environment is that this stuff if toxic to life!  Unless your an extremeophile bacteria that is!
 

Offline Mazurka

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
« Reply #9 on: 14/04/2011 10:24:07 »
I believe they clean it, and then reprocess it.

More is burned than reprocessed ...

Quote
The majority of that used oil is collected and sold as a combustible fuel, mainly used in power plants or industrial boilers.
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=can-oil-be-recycled
In the UK most is blended to provide bunker fuel for ships or used in cement kilns. I think there are only 2 full time oil fired / co fired power stations left. 

Changes to UK waste legisltation, driven by the EU Landfill Diretive and the Hazardous Waste regulations is driving technology that is likely to lead to increasing numbers of small scale recovery plants.   
 

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Why cant I pour used motor oil on the ground?
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