Kennewick fighting used oil dumping

Kennewick fighting used oil dumping »Play Video
KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Kennewick's on-going effort to clean up oil and grease could end up giving back to the community.

A new agreement would put an oil drop-off station at the transfer station and for every pound of oil recycled, money will go to help needy families.

Carol Clayton has lived in Kennewick for almost three years.
She uses cooking oil on a regular basis.

"I use a lot of olive oil and stuff," Clayton says.

But when it comes to getting rid of that used oil and grease, she might be a little guilty,

"Normally, I do wash them down the sink," she admitted.

But it's not just a matter of gumming up the works in your own house.
The city spends more than $120,000 every year cleaning out waste water treatment systems.

Most people know you shouldn't put cooking oil down your kitchen sink, but what a lot of people will do is just wait for it to harden and then throw it out with the trash, but the city of Kennewick wants us to know that that could be equally as harmful to the environment.

"I know it clogs up the sink a little bit, but as far as the environment, I didn't realize it would have such a huge impact," Clayton says.

It's why the city is entering into an agreement that would put a new oil collection center at the Waste Management Transfer Station on W. 27th and Ely Street.

The collection area would be put in by a private company who would recycle and then sell the bi-product.

And for every pound of oil collected, the company will donate six cents to Kennewick Kares, a program that helps low-income families pay their utility bills.

Carol Clayton is on board with the idea because it helps keep the city clean.

"We're leaving our land to our grandchildren and children's children, you know, so I think it's important to keep it clean and to respect it," she says.

Kennewick has already seen a 25 percent drop in the amount of grease and oil in the sewer system.

Council will vote on this new agreement this week.