Superior Stormwater is a project by the Environmental Services Division of the Public Works Department for the City of Superior, Wisconsin. The blog is a way to bring information about stormwater and related topics to the public. Please let us know if there are any topics you'd like us to cover! For more information, check out our website at www.ci.superior.wi.us!
It sounds counter-intuitive in a diet crazed world full of quick results diet products. We're not commenting on those. We want everyone to stop putting fats, oils, and grease down any household drain. It can lead to some pretty sticky situations. Case in point: London made news this week because a 17 ton fat berg was in their sewers. A fat berg? What is THAT? (here's the news story, in case you'd like to see the fat berg yourself)
So where do fats, oils, and grease (FOGs) come from? Well, when you make meat (think bacon), gravy, or sauces or use cooking oils, shortening, lard, butter, margarine, etc, you're using/creating FOGs.
When fats, oils, and grease are put down the sink, they can clog up pipes either in your home or on the way to the wastewater treatment plant. Even if they are dumped while still hot and in liquid form, they will cool and solidify on their journey to the WWTP. The garbage disposal won't get rid of them, either. Once they solidify, they can build up and reduce the amount of water that can flow through the pipes. Or they can cause a sewer backup...and that is NOT a problem you want.
If you've cooked things that use/create FOGs, you need to be able to dispose of them somehow. Anything with fats, oils, or grease should go in the trash instead of the garbage disposal. It also should not be put into compost bins. FOGs can attract pests and be fairly odorous in a compost bin, so not a great idea. First of all, any dishes that were used in preparation or cooking should be wiped down without water or a cloth rag. You should use a paper towel so that it can be discarded; using a cloth rag will just cause problems later on when the rag has to be washed. Discard the paper towels in the trash. Any remaining food or FOGs on the cooking implements should also be discarded in the trash. This will prevent the FOGs from becoming an expensive and gross problem for you down the line.
For more information, check out our webinar "Fats, Oils, and Grease Management for the Food Service Industry" on August 21st. Register here.