BC Hydro has opened a $2.3m biodiesel power generating station at McBride in British Columbia.

The power station consists of three 1.5MW generators that run on biodiesel – a fuel which consists of a blend of conventional diesel fuel mixed with quantities of organic material derived from waste vegetable oil or animal fat.

Two generating units will be dedicated for operation year round and the third unit will operate during winter months when demand is at peak levels.

The units are designed to start up automatically when there is a power outage to provide power to the community in and around McBride.

BC Hydro said it is also allocating up to $750,000 in additional funding through 2012 for vegetation maintenance to improve the reliability of power delivery in the area.