Baltimore Invites Local Food Pantries to Join Clean Drain Campaign

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The Baltimore Clean Drain Campaign is offering a chance to help Baltimore’s food banks and food pantries feed the hungry, while also taking steps that will help reduce sewer overflows and basement backups.

“Many Baltimoreans don’t realize the consequences of grease or wipes in their plumbing,” said Rudolph S. Chow, P.E., Director of the Baltimore City Department of Public Works. “With this campaign, we’re inviting food pantries to help spread the word to Baltimore residents.”

Fats, oils, and grease (FOG) left over from cooking and poured down drains, as well as wipes that are flushed down toilets, are key contributors to sewer clogs. City residents who pledge to put FOG in the trash, and to keep wipes out of toilets will trigger a cash donation to a local food pantry selected by the resident. Plus, they’ll keep the drains and sewers operating much more effectively when they adopt these better disposal strategies.

Food pantries in Baltimore are being offered a chance to earn money that they can use to buy food for the hungry through the Clean Drain Campaign ( Managers of food pantries are invited to visit the Clean Drain Campaign website and click the “Register” button. There is no cost to register, and the only follow-up task for the food pantries is to encourage clients and donors to pledge to properly dispose of FOG and wipes, and to select them as the recipient of that donation.

Food pantries have until Friday, Feb. 17, to register. Food pantry managers may also email for further details.

“I am excited for this opportunity for our residents to help feed their neighbors and also help keep our streams cleaner just by adopting better waste disposal strategies,” said Mayor Catherine E. Pugh. “I look forward to having food pantries respond to this opportunity to help feed the hungry, while spreading the word about keeping FOG and wipes out of the sewers.”

Money for the donations comes from the Chesapeake Bay Trust and Walmart and food donations come from MOM’s. People who make pledges do not also need to contribute money; they just need to select their favored food pantry and make good on their pledges to properly dispose of FOG and wipes. The campaign will be open to residents in March.

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The Baltimore City Department of Public Works supports the health, environment, and economy of our City and region by cleaning our neighborhoods and waterways and providing its customers with safe drinking water and sustainable energy practices.