It is no secret that cities around the globe are experiencing a rise in fatbergs within city sewers. These sewer ‘monsters’ are comprised of fats, oils, grease, wet wipes and hundreds of other hygienic and illicit items that should not be put down drains or flushed. Once a fatberg begins to form it quickly grows and can soon block an entire section of sewer.
The Financial Burden of Fatbergs
New York City recently started a fatberg campaign and said that “the city spends approximately $18.8 million a year to degrease the sewers, deal with damage caused by sewer backups, and repair plant equipment and transport those items to landfill. As these costs increase, it will also increase water and sewer rates (NYC)”. While London, spends $19 to $63 million (£15 and £50 million) annually removing fatbergs from city sewers. Smaller cities are also experiencing the financial burden of fatbergs, Detroit recently cleared a single 100-foot long fatberg found in an 11-foot diameter pipe at a cost of $100,000.
While cities are paying to deal with fatbergs growing beneath our feet, these costs are pushed on to residents through their water and sewer bills. Your wallet is feeling the effects of fatbergs.
Environmental Damage from Fatbergs
While it is relatively easy to calculate the cost of domestic fatberg removal, it is not as easy to calculate the cost of the environmental damage that occurs when sewers overflow. Fatbergs clog sewers and restrict the flow of waste, when a sewer line is too restricted, that raw sewage can flow into homes, streets, neighborhoods, rivers, lakes and oceans through manholes and street drains. The EPA estimates that 65 percent of all sewer spills are caused by fats, oils and grease.
Once this raw sewage finds its way out of the sewer, it doesn’t take long for it to run into our clean water supply. The environmental and health implications can be disastrous.
How are you helping eliminate fatbergs?
So now we ask, what are you doing to help stop fatbergs? Have you taken notice of what is happening and decided to stop rinsing cooking grease and oil down your kitchen sink drain? Have you stop flushing wet wipes down the toilet? Are you being mindful of how your actions effect not only you but your neighbors and the local environment as well? Have you taken the time to help educate others? A small change in your kitchen routine and bathroom behavior can make a positive and noticeable impact on the size and frequency of fatbergs. We all have the power to help.
The FOG Safe Drain Guard
The FOG Safe Drain Guard is designed to be placed into the top of your kitchen drain or on your countertop. You can quickly and easily pour the used cooking fat, oil or grease (FOG) into it, and then promptly dispose of the entire drain guard, instead of rinsing these harmful contaminants down the kitchen sink. Our FOG Safe Drain Guard is made with recyclable materials to absorb the fats, oils and grease and can be thrown out with your regular garbage. See a FOG Safe Drain Guard in action over on our FOG Safe YouTube channel.
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