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Fats, Oils and Grease Licensing & Enforcement in Cork County Council Alan Costello A/Scientist Wastewater Laboratory Cork County Council.

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Presentation on theme: "Fats, Oils and Grease Licensing & Enforcement in Cork County Council Alan Costello A/Scientist Wastewater Laboratory Cork County Council."— Presentation transcript:

1 Fats, Oils and Grease Licensing & Enforcement in Cork County Council Alan Costello A/Scientist Wastewater Laboratory Cork County Council

2 FOG Problems in WWTP’s  FOG (Now referred to as ‘Oils and Greases’)  C n H 2n+1 COOH  mg/l in untreated wastewater, 30–40% of the total chemical oxygen demand  Clog inlet screens to WWTPs  Increase the COD loading  Micro organisms cannot easily break them down  Grease balls in aeration basins  Odours  Reduces oxygen transfer, increase energy requirement  Filamentous bacteria  Foaming  Poor settling sludge  Chaos in Membrane Bio-Reactor (MBR) plants- pore blockages, significant cost issues  Create unsightly films d/s of discharge  EPA have set FOG as an ELV on some WWDLs

3 Local Government (Water Pollution) Act 1977 Section 16: A person.. shall not…discharge or cause or permit the discharge of any trade effluent or other matter (other than domestic sewage or storm water) to a sewer, except under and in accordance with a licence. "trade effluent" means effluent from any works, apparatus, plant or drainage pipe used for the disposal to waters or to a sewer of any liquid (whether treated or untreated), either with or without particles of matter in suspension therein, which is discharged from premises used for carrying on any trade or industry (including mining), but does not include domestic sewage or storm water. "sewage" includes domestic sewage and a combination of domestic sewage and storm water” (Domestic sewage not defined).

4 Urban Wastewater Treatment Regulations 2001: Domestic waste water" means waste water from residential settlements and services which originates predominantly from the human metabolism and from household activities. Due to “absence of a definition of domestic sewage…lack of uniformity on the application of licensing requirements to domestic-type wastewater discharges…” Circular L8/2003 (WSP) Interpreted Domestic Sewage as: “Including also sewage from a different source, but which nevertheless is of a composition or concentration produced by a household” and exempt from licensing. Recommended licensing restaurants, food preparation establishments, butchers etc.

5 Water Services Act 2007 Section 63 (not yet commenced-will replace S16 of the LG(WP)A ) A person…shall not…discharge or cause or permit the discharge, either directly or indirectly, of any trade effluent or other matter (other than domestic waste water or storm water) to a sewer. “trade effluent” means effluent from any works, apparatus, plant or drainage pipe used for the disposal to a waste water works of any liquid (whether treated or untreated), either with or without particles of matter in suspension therein, which is discharged from premises used for carrying on any trade or industry (including mining), but does not include domestic waste water or storm water. “domestic waste water” means waste water of a composition and concentration (biological and chemical) normally discharged by a household, and which originates predominantly from the human metabolism or from day to day domestic type human activities, including washing and sanitation, but does not include fats, oils, grease or food particles discharged from a premises in the course of, or in preparation for, providing a related service or carrying on a related trade.

6 1 st FSE FOG License issued in 2005 Number of licenses issued by Cork County Council; 143 FOG licenses issued 19 FOG licences issued in Kinsale 15 FOG licenses issued in Midleton FOG programme currently under review Cork County Council FOG Programme

7 Licensing Procedure Local Area Engineers identify significant FOG dischargers in their functional area to Environment Directorate. Environment Directorate staff call to premises and explain to operators FOG control requirements & explain licensing procedure. or Environment Directorate write to these premises advising them of their FOG control requirements, their licensing obligations and set a date for an application form to be submitted. Completed Application Form submitted to Environment, who forward a copy to Area Engineer for comment. Premises inspected where possible. Further Information sought, or licence issued to applicant.

8 FOG Licence Application Information Required Applicant details, company reg. no. etc. Details of activity Usage of premises ( employees, hours of business etc.) Drawings showing; Layout Sewer connection FOG producing equipment Grease removal equipment & service agreement Chemical analysis of a sample post GRU Volume of discharge produced (water in/water out sufficient) Details of materials (detergents etc.) used on premises

9 FOG License Requirements Adequately sized GRU Passive retention/active grease removal to I.S E.N 1825 Concentration should not exceed 25mg/l or Construction in accordance with specified minimum dimensions. Regular maintenance of the equipment as per manufacturers recommendations by operator, with maintenance records to be forwarded to Area Engineer's Office annually. Regular cleaning of equipment, with records to be maintained. Proper disposal of separated FOGs by permitted contractor & records Best management practises re. kitchen waste disposal - sink strainers, plate/pot scraping to bin, recovery of used cooking oils- i.e. remove FOGs at source License ELV: 50mg/l FOG 1000mg/l BOD Annual Licence Fee ( €100/year) Licence charges structured to promote self compliance by licensee in conjunction with L.A.O. Fees increase if inspection/sampling required.

10 FOG Licence Application Form issues Applicant unable to identify sewer connection “no idea, assume it’s outside the shop somewhere” Poor / absent drawings Sections left completely blank “I’m too stupid to fill it in” Improvised forms used No analysis of effluent Who is the owner/operator? Applicant doesn’t ‘exist’ To whom do we issue the licence? Cost of analysis Application fee is € irrespective of size of operation

11 FOG Licence Monitoring FOG licensees not included in routine S4/S16 license monitoring programme Monitoring at the request of the Local Area Office if problem in sewer Licensees are then charged per inspection visit Exceed ELV  enforcement action Enforcement Options Available:  Warning letter  S.16 (1) WPA Prosecution  S.16(13) WPA Notice

12 Failure to Apply for a licence On expiry of prescribed date from initial letter, final warning letter issued advising that Environment Directorate Staff will call to the premises and conduct dye test to establish connection to sewer. Dye test + Caution owner/operator that a prosecution will be initiated unless application form submitted within given time frame. Summons issued - Usually sufficient to get them to apply for a license. Court Appearance

13 Enforcement Problems Encountered Access difficult due to hours of operation Sudden language barrier during inspection. Owners seldom on site even if prior agreement to meet. Sewer connections tarred over Organized resistance from traders Need to prove a discharge of trade effluent from the premises prior to using S.16(1) or S.16(13) Dye test merely confirms they are connected to a sewer, does not prove they actually discharge to the sewer. “Insufficient evidence” of a discharge. A sample taken from a pipe does not mean they discharged it as you don’t know what else is connected to that pipe Unlikely to obtain a sample given low volumes of discharge Frequent adjournments

14 Enforcement Options Try to have enough circumstantial evidence to persuade an individual to plead include; Photographs of dishes in sinks Dye test from sink Sample if possible Camera survey of sewer Evidence from local water services staff history of blockages S.22(6) WSA: Direction to take measures if risk to health or environment S.70 WSA: Occupier of a premises shall not permit wastewater to be discharged to a sewer that causes/likely to cause a risk to human health/environment S.70(1) interfere with the free flow of the contents of the sewer S.70(3) Focus on one of the larger dischargers, usually several smaller ones are waiting to see what happens. Is there a need to amend existing legislation? E.g. A premises shall be connected to the satisfaction of the wastewater services provider’?

15 -Thank You-


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