How to ditch the holiday cooking fat 

Like taking down the Christmas tree, responsible disposal of cooking oil used in the preparation of holiday feasts could become a year-end tradition.

On Saturday, drop-off sites for the leftover grease were set up at several locations throughout San Francisco, including Whole Foods stores and Costco.

Inside the bins, people left behind their oils and fats — poured into jars, used juice bottles and other containers.

Eva Mirales of Daly City had finished shopping Saturday at Costco and walked past the collection bin. She said she had heard something about the grease-recycling program but has not done it herself.

“I know it’s good for the environment,” she said. “I just don’t think about keeping my oil.”

Today is the last day for the holiday drop-off program, which is part of a larger initiative organized by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, which not coincidentally oversees The City’s system of water and waste pipes.

Launched in 2007, SF Greasecycle aims to divert fats, oil and grease out of the sewers — recycling it instead into biodiesel fuel.

Throughout the year, three trucks collect and bring back waste vegetable oil from restaurants and other businesses to a transfer station at the SFPUC’s southeast treatment plant.

In 2008, The City received a $1 million grant from the California Energy Commission to build a grease-to-biodiesel production facility.

In the last two years, the SF Greasecycle program has collected about 200,000 gallons of waste cooking oil from about 600 restaurants — an amount that’s estimated to generate 1.5 million gallons of low-emission biofuel annually.

The residential program has yielded about 3,000 gallons of grease.

The biofuel that’s created by the drop-off program will be used in a pump truck that collects grease and oil from restaurants. Next year, city officials say it could begin powering other vehicles in San Francisco’s fleet.

Good riddance

SF Greasecycle New Year Holiday cooking oil collection centers:

Costco Warehouse: 10th and Bryant streets

Whole Foods stores: California and Franklin streets; Rhode Island and 17th streets; Fourth and Harrison streets.

Dogpatch Biofuels: 765 Pennsylvania Ave.

Haight Ashbury Neighborhood Council Recycling Center: Frederick and Arguello streets

Household Hazardous Waste Drop-off Center: Tunnel Avenue and Beattie Road

Walden House: Newhall Street and Evans Avenue

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Brent Begin

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Sunday, Mar 18, 2018


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