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Cheltenham's recycled cooking oil will help power the UK's lights


Residents of Cheltenham are being urged to recycle their used cooking oil at the Swindon Road recycling centre, for recovery into renewable electricity.

Currently, UK water companies are spending an estimated £15 million each year on clearing drains blocked by the improper disposal of cooking oil into sinks. By recycling cooking oil we are also diverting as much as possible from costly landfill.

In a new scheme launched by Cheltenham Borough Council in partnership with Ubico Ltd, it’s environmental services provider, used cooking oil is collected in a safe and environmentally friendly fashion.

Councillor Roger Whyborn, cabinet member for sustainability, said: “We’re pleased to be able to offer local residents the option to recycle their cooking oil at the Swindon Road recycling centre. It’s important to dispose of cooking oil appropriately and by producing an alternative energy source it is also reducing the need for fossil fuels and reducing greenhouse emissions.”

Scott Williams, strategic client officer, added: “It’s easy for residents to recycle their cooking oil. You just need to allow the oil to cool completely before dealing with it, strain it into a container such as a plastic bottle or jar with a lid but don’t mix it with anything else such as water or it wont be recyclable. Once the container is full, take your oil to the recycling centre and pour the oil into the clearly marked tank.”

Once collected by eco-firm Living Fuels, the waste oil is taken to their state-of-the-art facility, where it is recovered through a natural process that involves no heat or chemicals, into an environmentally friendly bioliquid. This bioliquid is then fed into the National Grid at times of unexpected power demand.

Rob Murphy, Living Fuels’ Operations Director said of the scheme: We’re delighted to be able to provide residents with an easy way to dispose of their used cooking oil, while helping to keep the lights in the UK, through a sustainable energy source.”

Cheltenham Council’s recycling rate stood at 46% in the 2011/12 year, with an aim to reach 60% by 2020.