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How Yorkshire Water are using bacteria to tackle fat blockages

You may have read recently about how water company Yorkshire Water have been making use of an unusual method to take on the problems they have been having with sewer blockages in the region. We will now consider how this works in practice.

The bacillus bacteria, which can be found in the gut of humans, is organically grown to feed on the fat, greases and oils accumulating in the sewerage system. Before it is poured into the sewer, it is first mixed with non-chlorinated water.

These fat-busting bugs, as they have come to be known, were originally used in a trial by the water company but after a number of successes during the festive period, they have been deployed in a wider programme within the city of York.

A new approach to the growing issue of sewer blockages was required, with this solution now seeming to be working on an on-going basis.

Yorkshire Water’s stakeholder engagement manager, Simon Young, said:

“The deployment of fat-busting bugs in our sewer network is an example of this, with these ‘good’ bacteria literally feasting on solidified fat in our sewer. And because these bacteria constantly multiply in the right environment, we can leave them to get on with their job in our sewers, seven days a week, 24 hours a day, without the need for regular dosing.”