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Fats, Oils & Grease (FOG)
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s FOG Program
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s FOG Program has been established to promote and contribute to a clean environment by reducing the number of sanitary sewer overflows caused by Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG). Sewer overflows and backups can cause health hazards, damage homes and the environment. Sewer pipes blocked by grease that enters the sewer from drains can cause overflows.

Grease Traps
Grease traps or interceptors are passive devices required by municipalities to stop grease, fat, oil, wax or debris from entering the city's sanitary sewer system. Traps and interceptors are designed to separate greasy materials from wastewater so that they can be removed before they enter the sewer system.

Building codes require all such new or rebuilt facilities to install a grease interceptor to pre-treat grease entering a sewer. This includes restaurants, caterers, school cafeterias and other commercial cooking facilities. All units should be fitted with a standard final-stage sample box. Interceptors must typically be sized for at least a 30-minute peak wastewater flow detention time from all contributory sources such as pot sinks, dishwashers, floor drains and mat washing area drains before draining to the sanitary sewer system.

Where Do Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) Come from In your Home?
FOG comes from meats, lard, cooking oil, butter, shortening, margarine, baking goods, sauces and dairy products. FOG can be found on cooking and eating utensils, pots, pans, and cooking surfaces.

The Effects of FOG on the Environment
FOG accumulation in the sewer system causes blockages that result in untreated wastewater overflows.

The untreated wastewater flows into streets, storm drains, ponds, creeks, rivers, oceans and backs up into business as well as residential homes. Sewer spills can pollute beaches and streets, spread disease and requires expensive clean up.

Protecting Your Home & the Environment from FOG
The following tips can help you protect your home and the environment from FOG:
  • Scrape or wipe fats, oils, and grease and other food residue from pots, pans, and, utensils before washing or placing in dish washing machine.
  • Never pour grease down drains or into toilets.
  • Collect and empty used cooking oils and grease in a closed container and dispose of in garbage can.
  • Share this information with friends.