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Residents Reminded to Not Dump Grease In Sinks

Kitchen sinkArlington County is reminding residents to avoid pouring fats, oils and grease down their drains.

In advance of the holiday season, the county’s Department of Environmental Services sent out an email reminder to community listservs warning that dumping fats, oils and grease (FOG) down the sink could cause harm to the county’s sanitation system when the substances solidify.

Cooking oil, fat, butter, margarine, shortening and food scraps could all potentially damage sewer lines and the environment, according to DES.

“When FOG is dumped down the drain, it forms large, thick grease balls that clog our sewer pipes,” Watershed Outreach Program Manager Aileen Winquist wrote in the email. “Clogged pipes can result in sewage backups and spills, flooding homes and businesses, causing environmental problems and traffic tie-ups.”

A sewage line clog was blamed for the sewage backup that flooded the Harris Teeter near Potomac Yard, though the exact cause of the clog has not been revealed.

To help avoid backups, Winquist advised residents to pour grease into metal trash cans, wipe down dishes with paper towels and to clean drains “by pouring 1/2 cup baking soda down the drain followed by ½ cup vinegar. Wait 10 to 15 minutes and then rinse with hot water.”

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The Arlington-Aachen High School exchange is returning this summer and currently accepting applicants.

The sister-city partnership started in 1993 by the Arlington Sister Cities Association, which seeks to promote Arlington’s international profile through a variety of exchanges in education, commerce, culture and the arts. The exchange, scheduled June 17th to July 4th, includes a two-week homestay in Aachen plus three days in Berlin. Knowledge of the German language is not required for the trip.

Former participants have this to say:

_”The Aachen exchange was an eye-opening experience where I was fully immersed in the life of a German student. I loved biking through the countryside to Belgium, having gelato and picnics in the town square, and hanging out with my German host student’s friends. My first time out of the country, the Aachen exchange taught me to keep an open mind, because you never know what could be a life changing experience.” – Kelly M._

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Learn about the new assessment of Arlington’s urban tree canopy and the many ecological and social benefits trees provide. Staff from the Green Infrastructure Center (GIC) will share study results and compare canopy cover for different areas of Arlington.The webinar will include assessments of ecosystem services such as stormwater mitigation, air quality, carbon uptake, and urban heat islands. For background on Arlington trees see the “Tree Benefits: Growing Arlington’s Urban Forest” presentation at http://www.gicinc.org/PDFs/Presentation_TreeBenefits_Arlington.pdf.

Please register in advance to assure your place at the webinar, https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/29543206508863839.

About the Arlington County Civic Federation: The Arlington County Civic Federation (“ACCF”) is a not-for-profit corporation which provides a forum for civic groups to discuss, debate, inform, advocate and provide oversight on important community issues, on a non-partisan basis. Its members include over ninety civic groups representing a broad cross-section of the community. Communications, resolutions and feedback are regularly provided to the Arlington County Government.

The next meeting is on Tuesday, February 21,2023 at 7 pm. This meeting is open to the public and will be hybrid, in-person and virtually through Zoom. Part of the agenda will be a discussion and vote on a resolution “To Restore Public Confidence in Arlington County’s Governance”. For more information on ACCF and this meeting, go to https://www.civfed.org/.

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Submit your own Announcement here.

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