THE 2020 EUROPEAN FOG SUMMIT WAS PROUDLY ORGANIZED BY

WITH THE SUPPORT OF

ABOUT

Fatbergs are enormous solid masses fat, oil and grease (FOG), along with many other products like wet wipes that congeal together. FOG is a by-product of food production, and is estimated to be the root cause of 50-75% of all in-line sewer blockages.

As Fatbergs form and grow, wastewater begins to move more slowly through the sewer. Eventually, the Fatberg stops moving all together and starts to back up.

As sewer networks come under increasing pressure from growing populations and the number of food service establishments continues to grow, new ways of managing FOG must be developed to safeguard the long-term sustainability of our urban communities.

An event centred on

The goal of the 2020 European FOG Summit was to bring together FOG innovators and European wastewater professionals for two immersive days of learning and collaboration centered on innovative ways to tackle fatbergs through better FOG management.

When selecting potential speakers to approach we wanted to make sure that we provided a holistic view of the FOG ecosystem throughout the event. That meant approaching speakers who operate throughout the FOG lifecycle including FOG managers, industry consultants, public water and the sewage industry, the hospitality and academia among others. We also wanted to make sure that we were featuring people who were looking to push the boundaries with the FOG efforts in new and interesting ways.

Among other subjects, the European FOG Summit 2020 had talks and debates covering:

  • Regulatory landscapes
  • The growing threat of FOG and how much the food service industry contributes to this
  • An international perspective to tackle FOG at source and to prevent fatbergs
  • Resource recovery and circular economy: how to use FOG as a new resource
  • And even the impacts of fake news
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on facebook
Share on whatsapp
Share on email
Overview
Fat, oil and grease and wet wipes are a worldwide problem, and only by working closely together we can manage and reduce this problem. For two days, some of the most prestigious minds in the European water and wastewater industries met to discuss and to rethink the global issue that is FOG. Held at Waternet’s headquarters in Amsterdam, the European FOG Summit hosted a series of panels from regulation to the circular economy. Kicking off the 2020 edition of the European FOG Summit, Waternet’s Managing Director Renze van Houten gave the best summary of what the participants were about to experience.
1. The Dutch Regulatory Landscape
Talking about the Netherlands, DCMR’s Nienke de Wilde and Gerard van der Jagt shared the stage with Waternet’s Thinka Lapre and Tjits van Lent. They explained how a combination of education, law enforcement and technological advancements is helping the country to prevent blockages and fatbergs from happening.
READ MORE >
2. The British Regulatory Landscape
Stephen Williams, an enforcement officer at Southern Water, used his time on stage during the second keynote session to state that the UK urgently needs to create specific, proactive legislation to address FOG management.
READ MORE >
3. The American Regulatory Landscape
The third session saw SwiftComply’s very own Olivier Terrien explaining how the US regulatory system follows a funnel structure with a federal agency overseeing 50 states, which in turn passes local legislation onto thousands of counties and cities.
READ MORE >
4. International Perspectives to Eradicate Fatbergs
The audience saw debate and discussion from Stephen Edwards (Southern Water), Enda Collins (Irish Water), Teresa Lewis (City of Carmel) and Dr. Tom Curran (University College Dublin) during this highly engaging panel, moderated by Tom Freyberg (Aquatech).
5. FOG, Flushability and Fake News
FOG, Flushability and Fake News Next came Anglian Water’s consultant Clare Pillinger on fake news and its impacts on the water and wastewater industry. Clare was part of the group behind the ‘Fine to Flush’ initiative, which created a common standard that informs which wet wipes are actually flushable — what puts them apart from the ones that the manufacturers wrongly advertise as such.
6. Resource Recovery: Is Biodiesel The Answer?
The final debate of the day centred around resource recovery. Dickon Posnett (Argent Energy) conducted the discussion, with Karyn Georges (Isle Utilities), Mike Hogg (Argent Energy) and Steven Wante (Suez) talking about what should happen to fats, oils and grease after this material has been collected, and what we can or must do to see an enabled circular economy.
7. Bold Statements
Closing the day, SwiftComply’s UK Business Director, Laura Su, went on stage with Dr Mar Batista (British Water), Natalia Jawiarczyk (Cranfield University) and Clare Pillinger for a bold statements session about regulations and resource recovery.
8. The Tip of The Fatberg
Dr. Tom Curran (UCD) opened the second day with a talk on how research can help find solutions to stop fatbergs from appearing.
9. Fatbergs in Amsterdam: Recovery, Reuse and Costs
In this session, Waternet’s Bas de Nijs also spoke about the methods of preventing fatbergs, but from a Dutch perspective.
10. The Reality of Running a Food Business
From a suppliers perspective, Julek Drowniak (Riotech), Gurgen Yanguc (Grease Shield) and Michael Fitzpatrick (Grease Guardian) were invited to share the grease trap providers’ viewpoints. They all agreed that the best way to get food businesses to install these devices is to have them first and foremost understand why stopping FOG pollution is so critical.
Engaging Opportunities
This second edition of the European FOG Summit was filled with technology and engagement. Networking was not the only opportunity to engage during the summit, the audience could use their smartphones during sessions to connect with panellists, asking real-time questions and partaking in polls that extended and enhanced the topics in discussion.
Previous
Next

A WORD FROM THE DELEGATES

"Bringing people with different background and ideas about the use and/or difficulties that FOG products can present was the most valuable outcome of FOG SUMMIT 2020."
'I got to hang out with 'my people' - talk about impactful regulations, sewer sheep and behavior change as if it were perfectly normal."
"Meeting people from around the world who work in FOG and in sewer pollution is crucial in helping me understand what current best practice is, and how we can implement this in the UK."
"I learned more about situations in different countries and also it was interesting how the Summit was organized. Because I was inspired by this Summit so much that I plan to do an educational FOG forum in Russia. Thanks a lot for your hard work!"
"Being new to the field, the EU FOG Summit allowed me to meet and engage with a diverse range of people from a variety of professional backgrounds. It was a great opportunity to gain as much knowledge as possible in a short amount of time and to gain insight into the newest and most cutting edge research into FOG."
"Great interaction with other delegates. I connected with others for future collaboration, so attending the event was very worthwhile."
Previous
Next

MEET THE SPEAKERS

A WORD FROM THE ORGANIZERS
"The sessions and themes were relevant to real issues and opened new discussions off stage as well. We had power-packed networking opportunities amongst the delegates. It was a truly wonderful gathering of wastewater industry professionals trying to put FOG high up on the agenda.​"
Previous
Next

Gallery

EXPERT INTERVIEWS



This video features:

1.  Renze van Houten, Managing Director at Waternet
2.  Dr. Tom Curran, Director, of MSc Environmental Technology Programme at University College Dublin
3.  Nienke de Wilde, Lead Inspection and Enforcement at DCMR
4.  Tom Freyberg, Content Director at Aquatech 
5.  Lily Van Hende, Country Manager at SwiftComply

When asking why hosting the European FOG Summit for its second time, Waternet's Managing Director - Renze van Houten - explains that the fight against fatbergs is undoubtedly key in their daily business.

We choose Amsterdam for the European FOG Summit for a few reasons, outside of the beautiful architecture and endless canals of course. We have been delighted with the progress we have been able to make both in terms of developing partnerships with local institutions like Waternet but also with our engagement of local food service entrepreneurs.

In 2018, we launched our 'Vetstrijder' (fat fighter) campaign  which engaged these restaurant owners to find out how much they knew about sustainable FOG management along with measuring grease trap adoption throughout Amsterdam. We quickly learned that less than 50% of the food service establishments surveyed had a grease trap installed while the other half did not know what it was or if they did they were unaware of how important it was to install one in terms of protecting the community.

Our findings showcased how important it is for regulators to understand the size and causes of the problems underground, while also being adept at effectively communicating with food service establishments to instigate long-term behavioral change.

This video features:

1.  Renze van Houten, Managing Director at Waternet
2.  Lily Van Hende, Country Manager at SwiftComply
3.  Dr.
Tom Curran, Director, of MSc Environmental Technology Programme at University College Dublin
4.  Bas de Nijs, Senior Wastewater Engineer at Waternet
5.  Karyn Georges, Head of Consulting at Isle Utilities
6.  Elvira Gabos, Fats Oils and Grease & Unflushables Project Manager at Southern Water
7.  Dr. Mar Batista, Technical Manager at British Water
8.  Nienke de Wilde, Lead Inspection and Enforcement at DCMR
9.  Gerard van der Jagt, Inspector at DCMR
10.  Tom Freyberg, Content Director at Aquatech 
11.  William Martens, Vlario and Farys 
12.  Steven Wante, Project & Material Resource Manager at Suez Belgium

We challenged experts to see what they considered is the best way to tackle FOG: education, regulation or innovation?

This video features:

1.  Renze van Houten, Managing Director at Waternet
2.  Steven Wante, Project & Material Resource Manager at Suez Belgium
3.  Dr. Tom Curran, Director, of MSc Environmental Technology Programme at University College Dublin
4.  Bas de Nijs, Senior Wastewater Engineer at Waternet
5.  Karyn Georges, Head of Consulting at Isle Utilities
6.  Elvira Gabos, Fats Oils and Grease & Unflushables Project Manager at Southern Water 
7.  Dr. Mar Batista, Technical Manager at British Water
8.  Nienke de Wilde, Lead Inspection and Enforcement at DCMR 9.Gerard van der Jagt, Inspector at DCMR
10.  Tom Freyberg, Content Director at Aquatech
11.  William Martens, Vlario and Farys
12.  Lily Van Hende, Country Manager at SwiftComply

This video features:
  1. Oliver Loebel, Secretary-General at EurEau
  2. Rüdiger Heidebrecht, Head of Department Training and International Cooperation at Deutsche Vereinigung für Wasserwirtschaft, Abwasser und Abfall (DWA)
  3. Simon Stevens, Manager at Riopact
  4. Jeroen de Boer, Teamleader at Waternet
  5. Barbara Anton, Coordinator Urban Water Management at ICLEI
  6. Tom Curran, Director of the MSc Environmental Technology University College Dublin
  7. David Gibbons, Co-founder at SwiftComply
  8. Nienke de Wilde, Lead Inspection and Enforcement at DCMR
  9. Stephen Edwards, Network Protection and Enforcement at Southern Water
  10. Cassandra Mac, Management Assistant at City of Tempe
  11. Karyn Georges, Head of Wastewater consultancy at Isle Utilities
  12. Barry Orr, Sewer Outreach and Control Inspector at City of London
  13. Ken Loucks, Interceptor Whisperer
This video features:
  1. Oliver Loebel, Secretary-General at EurEau
  2. Rüdiger Heidebrecht, Head of Department Training and International Cooperation at Deutsche Vereinigung für Wasserwirtschaft, Abwasser und Abfall (DWA)
  3. Simon Stevens, Manager at Riopact
  4. Jeroen de Boer, Teamleader at Waternet
  5. Barbara Anton, Coordinator Urban Water Management at ICLEI
  6. Tom Curran, Director of the MSc Environmental Technology University College Dublin
  7. David Gibbons, Co-founder at SwiftComply
  8. Nienke de Wilde, Lead Inspection and Enforcement at DCMR
  9. Stephen Edwards, Network Protection and Enforcement at Southern Water
  10. Cassandra Mac, Management Assistant at City of Tempe
  11. Karyn Georges, Head of Wastewater consultancy at Isle Utilities
  12. Barry Orr, Sewer Outreach and Control Inspector at City of London
  13. Ken Loucks, Interceptor Whisperer
“By bringing together the water industry, British Water is committed to help achieve zero uncontrolled discharges from sewers by 2050 in the UK.”
Dr. Mar Batista, British Water
“Fatbergs have grabbed media headlines around the world. Sharing international knowledge will be key to prevent and overcome the challenge.”
Tom Freyberg, Aquatech
“In many languages, FOG and Fatbergs are terms that can’t be translated literally. The French call Fatbergs 'Tapis de Graisse', while the Germans call them 'Fettklumpen'. The vocabulary is fragmented, but the FOG-issue remains the same in every country.”
Lily Van Hende, SwiftComply
“Sewers are not equal - current UK FOG regulation is reactive, we need proactive legislation, regulation and standards.”
Stephen Williams, Southern Water
“With so much fake news around, it’s a challenge to uncover the truth about what causes blockages and how to prevent them.”
Clare Pillinger Communications Consultancy
“With an overkill of unwanted waste, source control becomes inevitable.”
Bas de Nijs, Waternet
“Effective, targeted strategies for management of fat, oil and grease (FOG) deposits require understanding of the processes involved in FOG formation.”
Natalia Jawiarcwyk, Cranfield University
“We need the backing of relevant standards and legislation in the fight against FOG.”
Stephen Edwards, Southern Water
“The effort from technical and operational teams, combined with a focus on human behaviour, has demonstrated to be refreshing and strong formula, giving us extra power in our fight against FOG and wet wipes.”
Thinka Lapre, Waternet
"We have become specialists in the most degraded and difficult feedstocks utilizing exisiting waste streams. One of those feedstocks we can now use for biodiesel is FOG."
Dickon Posnett, Argent Energy
"Don't feed your sink!"
Teresa Lewis, City of Carmel
Previous
Next

SPECIAL THANKS

THE 2021 EUROPEAN FOG SUMMIT IS A COLLABORATION BETWEEN

Join us in Brighton

Sustainable water management, wastewater treatment, sewage, grease traps…if these are the words that typically pique your interest, then we have the conference for you… And it’s safe to say we’re just a little bit excited!

We’re bringing the best and brightest minds from around the world to discuss the current state of FOG and what the future might hold.

The 2020 European FOG Summit was an event like no other. And if you couldn’t attend it, don’t worry: we’re already working away on the 2021 European FOG Summit.

Pack your bags for a trip to the coastal city of Brighton, in the UK, where the 2021 edition will take place.

Be the first to hear about dates, speakers, and early bird offers.

THE 2021 EUROPEAN FOG SUMMIT IS A COLLABORATION BETWEEN