People in North Lincolnshire are recycling their old cooking oil to help power the National Grid.
A scheme implemented by North Lincolnshire Council in partnership with SITA Waste Management and renewable energy company Living Fuels transforms old cooking oil into a fuel for specially designed power station generators.
People empty their used cooking oil into tanks at the council’s eight household recycling centres.
From there, the oil is taken to Living Fuels’ state-of-the-art recovery facility in Norfolk and there it is recovered 100 per cent naturally into clean, green bioliquid, which is then used to power the National Grid at times of unexpected power demand.
So far the scheme, which began in 2010, has recovered enough oil to create enough carbon neutral energy to make over half a million cups of tea.
Each litre of used cooking oil recycled creates enough renewable energy power a Nintendo Wii for 235 hours and one full tank can power the average home for an entire year.
As well as generating power, recycling cooking oil also cuts the amount spent on repairing damaged sewers when they become blocked.
Each year it is estimated that £15 million is spent on repairing damage to sewers through improper disposal of used cooking oil down drains, a habit which the majority of UK residents admit is still their preferred way of getting rid of old oil.
Cllr Nigel Sherwood, cabinet member for Neighbourhood and Environment at North Lincolnshire Council, said: “Used cooking oil causes all manner of expensive problems if it’s not disposed of properly.“In North Lincolnshire we’re working with our recycling partners to create a solution that benefits everyone. It’s amazing to think that the fat you’re frying your fish in could next week be powering your toaster.”
Rob Murphy, Operations Director at Living Fuels, said: “We’re proud to be able to help North Lincolnshire convert a difficult waste stream into something that is beneficial for the environment, whilst at the same time helping them to reach their target of reducing carbon emissions in the county by 33 per cent.”