UPDATE - November 20, 2013
The Commercial Fats, Oil and Grease (FOG) Control program, instituted in 2011 and administered by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC), was recently lauded by the United States Environmental Protection Agency administrator, Gina McCarthy.
From a recent article on the topic in the San Francisco Examiner:
And no other city in America has anything like it, said McCarthy, who watched as a pair of SFPUC workers took away a barrel of grease from Johnny Foley’s restaurant near Union Square.
“This is innovation, not regulation,” said McCarthy, who added that the EPA has no plans to bring grease recycling to Washington, D.C., or other cities but is “hoping other cities see how this works.”
The 2011 FOG Control Ordinance was adopted by the Board of Supervisors on February 8, 2011; the law goes into effect on April 1, 2011. If you have a tenant that will be impacted by this new law, please note that they can attend one of two upcoming workshops - click on the image below to enlarge:
- Restaurants will be visited by an SFPUC Wastewater Inspector who will issue them a Wastewater Discharger ID Number and associated (no fee) permit documents.
- Restaurants will also be assigned a FOG Discharger Category number that reflects their potential to discharge grease to the sewer system and will indicate if grease capturing equipment is required.
- Restaurants that have grease capturing equipment already in place need to properly maintain and service the equipment and ensure that all wastewater discharge lines that contain grease are plumbed through the grease capturing equipment.
- Restaurants that do not have already grease capturing equipment will be required to install an approved type of Grease Removal Device within 60 days of notification by the City, unless a determination is made by an SFPUC Wastewater Inspector that it falls under the category of a “Less-Significant Grease Discharger” and thus can install any type of grease capturing equipment.
- Approved Grease Removal Devices must be certified by a recognized third-party testing agency to show conformance to the following standards: ASME 112.14.3 and ASME 112.14.4.
- New restaurants will be required to put in a Grease Removal Device before opening for business unless a determination is made by an SFPUC Wastewater Inspector that it is a “Less-Significant Grease Discharger” and thus can install any type of grease capturing equipment.
- Food service establishments that only reheat or assemble ready to eat food products are considered “Limited Food Preparation Establishments” and are not required to install grease capturing equipment.
- Restaurants that undergo certain renovations or remodeling which will result in an increase in the potential for discharging grease to the sewer system will have their FOG Discharger Category reassessed by the SFPUC and may be required to install grease capturing equipment.
- When a restaurant changes ownership, the new owner must obtain a (no fee) Wastewater Discharger Permit from the SFPUC Wastewater Enterprise.
- After May 1, 2011, no new garbage grinders can be installed in restaurants and those in existing businesses must be removed or made permanently inoperative.
- Any establishment found to be causing or contributing to grease related blockages may be direct by the City to install grease capturing equipment within a significantly shorter period of time than 60 days.
- The first version of the proposed FOG Control Ordinance was posted on the SFWater.org website in February 2010. From March through May 2010, SFPUC staff conducted outreach to potentially impacted businesses in the City – such as restaurants, caterers and other food service establishments. Presentations were made at several Town Hall meetings for restaurant owners and managers, in coordination with the Golden Gate Restaurant Association (GGRA). Information on the proposed ordinance was also presented to the Chinese Chamber of Commerce and to BOMA San Francisco. Additional door-to-door bilingual outreach was conducted to several hundred smaller restaurants in the City.
- The second version of the Proposed FOG Control Ordinance was presented to the SPFUC Commission on 9/14/10. This version of the proposed ordinance reflected revisions made to address comments received, to make the ordinance language more technically accurate in some cases, and to address several necessary non-substantive, administrative changes.
- The final version of the proposed FOG Control Ordinance was introduced at the Board of Supervisors on 11/9/10. The only change made to the ordinance as compared to the previous version was the addition of language clarifying or extending compliance and effective dates.
- To view a summary document explaining the rationale for the revisions made from the initial version circulated in February 2010 through to the version introduced at the Board of Supervisors in November 2010, click here.
- To view a redlined version of the revisions made between the first and second proposed versions of the ordinance, click here.