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Oil pollution in pond
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Foghorn



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 49
Location: Barcombe, E Sussex
PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 09 10:33 pm    Post subject: Oil pollution in pond  Reply with quote    

Hello,

A neighbour has managed to deposit a quantity of heating oil (kerosene I believe), into our pond, via an old drain. Does anyone have any ideas about how to remove this oil? I'm tempted to just toss a match over my shoulder onto the surface of the water, while walking coolly away, in the best traditions of the action film. But there must be safer/more reliable methods? Mustn't there...?

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 09 11:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Oil pollution in pond Reply with quote    

Odds are the match will just fizzle. Kerosene burns fantastically well, doesn't take instantly though.

How big is this pond? Is it practical to skim most of it off?

Foghorn



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 49
Location: Barcombe, E Sussex
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

It's about 5 yards by about 15

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Gosh, pretty big then. I don't know what the rules regarding reporting that kind of thing to the Environment Agency or the local water board would be.

If ots a few drops here and there on the surface, I'd leave it be. It'll degrade soon enough (kerosene is broken down by bacteria surprisingly fast). If its loads of it, a thicker layer on the surface, I'd be looking to skim off as much as I could.

Brownbear



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 14929
Location: South West
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 5:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I suggest you approach the berk who landed this on your plate, and give him the options of either getting a firm in to clean it up, or having you call the Environment Agency and watching them nail his head to a tree, and making him pay for the cleanup anyway.

mochyn



Joined: 21 Dec 2004
Posts: 24569
Location: mid-Wales
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Brownbear wrote:
I suggest you approach the berk who landed this on your plate, and give him the options of either getting a firm in to clean it up, or having you call the Environment Agency and watching them nail his head to a tree, and making him pay for the cleanup anyway.


I'm with BB although possibly beginning a little more diplomatically: depends how you get on with said neighbour, I suppose.

gz



Joined: 23 Jan 2009
Posts: 6583
Location: Ayrshire, Scotland
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I had this problem when I lived in Garn- oily runoff from a yard went into my pond and stream-from a neighbour- Water Board were out like a shot with practical help, Environment Agency needs to know too (0800 807060)

Behemoth



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 19023
Location: Leeds
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 8:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

They were out like a shot to make sure it wasn't a pollution incident from any of their drains or sewers. If it is clearly a private issue their interest will be limited but worth a call for the free advice. If the drain is theirs they'll have to clean up though from the way you've described it I don't think this is the case.

vegplot



Joined: 19 Apr 2007
Posts: 21298
Location: Ynys Môn
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 9:11 am    Post subject: Re: Oil pollution in pond Reply with quote    

Foghorn wrote:
Hello,

A neighbour has managed to deposit a quantity of heating oil (kerosene I believe), into our pond, via an old drain. Does anyone have any ideas about how to remove this oil? I'm tempted to just toss a match over my shoulder onto the surface of the water, while walking coolly away, in the best traditions of the action film. But there must be safer/more reliable methods? Mustn't there...?


The pillock shouldn't be dumping oil down the drain. Definitely a hanging offence and EA should be told about it.

crofter



Joined: 11 Feb 2007
Posts: 2252

PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Foghorn wrote:
It's about 5 yards by about 15


Could be less than a litre of oil. But not easy to remove once it is spread out.

JB



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 7748
Location: 91° N
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Before you get too irate bear in mind the neighbour might not know they have spilled any oil. For example it could be a slow leaking tap dripping into a surface drain or a minor spill from their last fill, from their point of view it's just the same old tank that smells of oil just as it always has and one litre out of the tank is almost imperceptible.

Foghorn



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 49
Location: Barcombe, E Sussex
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 1:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Thanks for the replies, folks - glad to get some moral support!

For info, the spillage is probably of the order of 10 - 100 litres, and it probably happened due to a leak, that the neighbour may not have known anything about. However, he is being a bit of an arse now by denying it had anything to do with him (a day after he had his oil tank repaired).

Enivornment Agency were pretty uninterested, I guess because it occurred on private land.

It may be worth doing some skimming to reduce the amount of pollution - any practical advice about how to do this (in the absence of a very large spoon...)?

mochyn



Joined: 21 Dec 2004
Posts: 24569
Location: mid-Wales
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

How about sheets of cardboard or layers of paper to soak it up?

Behemoth



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 19023
Location: Leeds
PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Does the pond have an overflow - raise the water level until the fule runs off?

Gervase



Joined: 17 Nov 2004
Posts: 8655

PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 09 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Best to remove the oil sooner rather than later, as it will prevent the water being aerated which will not only kill off wildlife there, but also cause nasty blue-green algal blooms.
Use paper towels or old rags to get the worst off the surface so that some air can get through.

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