Metro Vancouver gives thanks to those who don’t put grease down the drain

Coming to a drain new you – fatberg – caused by putting fats, oils and grease clogging pipes.

As many sit down this weekend for the Thanksgiving feast, they may not realize they are contributing to a costly problem.

The average 14 pound turkey produced about 250 millilitres or 1 cup of fat.

Image that multiplied by thousands of homes in this community alone and it can create a problem down the line.

Metro Vancouver is one of the governments encouraging people to not pour fats, oils and grease (or FOG) down the drains. They mix with other items such as wipes and dental floss to create what’s called a fatberg.

As soon as the FOGs go a short distance, they start to harden and end up clogging the sewage system.

“Putting grease down the drain can cause big problems, not only for municipal sewers but also for household plumbing systems,” said Darrell Mussatto, chair of the Metro Vancouver Utilities Commission. “This can lead to backed-up sewers and expensive repairs. It doesn’t matter how much hot water or soap you pour down after the grease. Sooner or later it solidifies.”

Metro Vancouver spends about $2 million to repair the damage caused by these products and homeowners can also face costly bills when their pipes get blocked. That’s why it created the Wipe It, Green Bin It campaign to educate residents. Metro Vancouver, after two successful pilots in Surrey and Richmond, is now rolling out a region-wide campaign in the lead up to Thanksgiving.

Disposal:

• For small amounts of grease, wipe or scrape out the pot or pan and put the grease into your green bin.

• Larger amounts of grease, like deep fryer oil, can be dropped off at an approved recycling depot.

According to Metro Vancouver, the FOGs can be taken to the Fraser Valley Bottle and Return-It Depot, Unit 108, 22575 Fraser Hwy. 604-533-8807

RECYCLING OPTIONS

Kitchen cloggers:

• Fats – dairy produts, salad dressings, margarine, butter, shortening.

• Oils – cooking oils such as olive, canola, vegetable, corn, peanut, coconut) as well as oil-based sauces.

• Grease – pan drippings, trimmings from meat, lard.

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