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Forum demystifies sewer 'FOG'

Wastewater industry leaders gathered at the latest WWT Industry Forum in central London recently to debate the increasing problems presented by fats, oils and grease (FOG).

Chaired by Steve Ntifo, environment and science adviser at Water UK, participants at the 'round table' event included influential representatives from organisations such as the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, United Utilities, Thames Water, South West Water and Severn Trent Water, as well as leading figures from event sponsors Anglian Water and Environmental Biotech UK.

The WWT Industry Forum follows hot on the heels of a recent WRc three-year study into FOG, the results of which are being used to develop a FOG management strategy. This will be a holistic approach to the management of FOG including source removal, recycling, best kitchen management practice, educational brochures, removal from the drainage system and disposal.

All present at the forum agreed that any solution must show a cost benefit. One such trial scheme illustrating the point is Baddow Road in Chelmsford, a prominent restaurant and take-away area. Here Anglian Water has managed to save £6,000 against the cost of treating blockages by implementing a bacterial bio-remediation solution supplied by Environmental Biotech.

The use of FOG for biofuel was also discussed at length, with Anglian Water stating that the 10,000 tonnes of FOG currently sitting in its sewers could be used to serve 8,000 family cars for a year!

Ultimately all agreed that education was the most effective way to raise awareness of the problems and possible solutions, with Water UK's Sewerage Network Abuse Prevention (SNAP) group, offering to take forward the issues raised.
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  • Steve Ntifo Environment and science adviser
    Water UK
  • Emma Cullerton Network strategy planning manager
    United Utilities
  • Michael O'Dwyer Engineer, FOG project
    Dublin City Council
  • Collette Nicholls Media manager
    Angian Water
  • Malcolm Dunk Senior consultant
    Thames Water
  • John Perriam Sewerage management strategist
    South West Water
  • Tim Everett Director of policy
    Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
  • Aziz Tejpar Managing director
    Environmental Biotech UK
  • Paul Gibbs Wastewater operations director
    Anglian Water
  • Fraser Pithie Senior operations manager
    Severn Trent Water


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