Discuss the facts about fats, oils and grease (FOG) with your students.
Why is FOG a problem?
FOG combined with tree roots in the sewer system can become massive, cement-like clogs, and cause over half of Sacramento Area Sewer Districtís sewer backups and overflows. When poured down the kitchen drain FOG causes sewer problems that result in:
- Damage to homes (ex: Yucky, stinky messes could overflow from drains and toilets onto the floors in your house. Ick!)
- Health and environmental hazards (ex: Sewer overflows in the street can work their way into storm drains, which go directly to our creeks and streams; thatís where fish and frogs live!)
- Higher costs for sewer service (ex: More money on utility bills means less money for other important needs, like food!)
- Increased maintenance for cleaning up messes and replacing pipes (ex: Would you want to clean up a yucky, smelly sewer spill? Somebody has to do it!)
How does FOG create sewer backups and overflows?
- When poured down the kitchen drain, FOG cools, turns solid and floats to the top of other liquid in sewer pipes. The FOG layer sticks to the sewer pipes and, over time, blocks sewage flow. It can then cause a sewer backup or overflow.
What products contain FOG?
- Common sources include food scraps, meat fats, cooking oils, lard, baked goods, salad dressings, sauces, marinades, dairy products, shortening, butter and margarine.
How can you help solve the FOG problem?
Itís easy to do your part. Just follow these simple steps.
Discuss an Action Plan.
- Encourage students to share StopTheClog.com and FOG disposal tips at home.
- Invite students to visit the Kidsí Corner on StopTheClog.com
- Ask students to share their ideas about what they can do at home to keep their kitchen sewer pipes clog-free. Encourage students to implement these steps at home to dispose of FOG the right way!
Demonstrate How FOG CAN Clog Pipes.
Just as fat accumulates and causes blockages in human arteries, fats, oils and grease accumulates in kitchen pipes causing sewer backups and overflows.
The six illustrations above show the following:
- FOG separates from other liquids as it goes down the kitchen drain.
- FOG cools and sticks to sewer pipes.
- Over time, sewer pipes become clogged and sewage flow becomes restricted.
- The clogged sewer pipe backs up and floods homes with sewage or it causes sewer overflows in streets.
- The untreated sewage can flow to local waterways. Sewer overflows harm the environment.
- Not only is FOG costly to the environment, it is also costly to ratepayers. Unfortunately, the cost of repairing clogged sewer pipes must be passed on to customers.