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The Drain is Not a Dump

Bacon grease

Grease Control Program for Food Service Establishments

no dumping

Dispose of fats, oils, and grease where they belong.

Fats, oils and grease come from meat, lard, cooking oil, butter and shortening. You can find them in fryers, pots, pans, food scraps, spoiled food, and on floors and cooking surfaces. The trouble starts when fats, oils and grease get into the sewer through sinks and floor drains. Sewer lines can become blocked, which can cause untreated wastewater to overflow into your facility and into storm drains leading to the ocean. Sewer spills can spread disease, pollute streets, close beaches, require expensive cleanup, and even close your business.

Major Source of Grease
Food service establishments within the South Coast Water District service area are a major source of fats, oils and grease entering the sewer system. State and federal agencies now require South Coast Water District to enforce limitations on the amount of grease and debris that goes into the sewers. The best way to stop these substances from building up in sewer lines is to prevent them from entering your drains in the first place by using kitchen best management practices.

Grease Control Ordinance
South Coast Water District’s Board of Directors approved a Grease Control Ordinance on February 21, 2006 following workshops, focus groups and meetings with local food service establishments over 10 months. The Grease Control Program requires food service establishments to complete an application and secure a permit to discharge wastewater into the sewer system. The Grease Control Program and the permit are designed to encourage facilities to handle kitchen grease properly and will allow the District to conduct inspections to confirm that kitchen best management practices are followed. The District’s inspector can provide suggestions and a resource list to assist in proper grease handling.

Potentially Lower Sewer Rates
As food service establishments discharge less fats, oils and grease into the public sewer system, the District anticipates lower sewer cleaning and maintenance costs. Therefore, under the program, facilities that implement kitchen best management practices may qualify for lower sewer usage rates. Establishments that also install and maintain properly sized grease interceptors may qualify for even lower sewer usage rates.

For more information about the District's Grease Control Program, please click on the appropriate link for your food service establishment:

South Laguna, Dana Point/North San Clemente

Training Videos

Please use this short and easy to follow video in your Employee Training. This video illustrates the proper ways to dispose of grease and clean up spills. Thanks for helping us to keep the District's sewer lines open and efficient!

VIDEO: The Drain is not a Dump (English)
VIDEO: The Drain is not a Dump (En Español)

You can help protect the environment, improve public health, avoid business downtime and save money by taking responsibility for the proper disposal of food waste generated by your business. Prevent fats, oils and grease from getting in the sewer lines. It’s more than just a good habit. It’s also good business.

Contact: Ron Cestari, FOG Program Manager: (949) 499-4555 Ext. 3136