A California doctor is in trouble after using some human medical waste to fuel several cars.
According to reports, Dr. Craig Alan Bittner, a former Beverly Hills plastic surgeon used fat from his patients to not only power his girlfriend’s SUV, but his Ford SUV as well.
Under California law it’s illegal to use human medical waste to power vehicles.
The fat in question was taken during liposuction procedures which were apparently carried out in his office in Beverly Hills, California. Liposuction is a procedure that removes pockets of fat from areas such as the thighs, hips, abdomen, and upper arms.
Bittner claimed on his website that his patients asked him to use their fat for fuel, but that hasn’t swayed California health officials.
“The vast majority of my patients request that I use their fat for fuel — and I have more fat than I can use,” said Bittner. He also said they not only “get to lose their love handles or chubby belly but they get to take part in saving the earth.”
It’s not clear on how the doctor actually converted the fat into fuel, but it’s still illegal in California.
And the search to save on filling your gas tank continues. Not just by using human fat, but by other sources as well such as kelp or algae. Recently, scientists in Scotland and Ireland won European funding for new research into a project that will create what is called “mari-fuels” - the marine equivalent to plant-based biofuels. Kelp are large seaweeds belonging to the brown algae. There are about 30 different types. Kelp grows in underwater “forests” in clear, shallow oceans. The program will investigate ways of converting seaweeds and plant algae into fuel–which is ironically another alternative to using crops as a source of alternative fuel. Many believe the rise in using crops for fuel will boost the price for consumers.
Meanwhile, the average gas price Americans are paying for gas is $1.64, a dramatic drop from the more than $3.00 a gallon early this year.
As for the body fat-using doctor, according to Forbes, after the news broke he moved to South America, closing his office in Beverly Hills.
However, the move was not for the fat use.
Patients have begun to file lawsuits that claim Bittner allowed an assistant and his girlfriend to perform surgeries without the proper medical licensing. Bittner left a posting Nov. 20 on his website explaining to clients he was moving to South America to volunteer at a small clinic “where I can help those most in need”, not mentioning anything about the fat use.
According to reports the California Dept. of Health has opened an inquiry on the matter. There is no news on whether Bittner will have to return to California to answer to any charges or lawsuits.