Video: Minister Addresses “Greaseball” Issue

April 15, 2014

A press conference was held this afternoon [Apr 15] following the discovery of what the Minister called “greaseballs” on Grape Bay Beach in Paget.

Those present included Minister of Health & Environment Trevor Moniz, Minister of Public Works Patricia Gordon-Pamplin, Bermuda Tourism Authority CEO Bill Hanbury, Minister Wayne Scott and Mayor of Hamilton Graeme Outerbridge.

image001

Minister Moniz said, “Late yesterday evening it was noticed that greaseballs had appeared on two South Shore beaches. As a result, Parks crews visited the beaches first thing this morning to remove the greaseballs.

The Minister said the origin of these greaseballs is the Seabright outfall approximately 1 1/2 km upwind.

“The Department of Health sampled the water at a number of beaches on Monday,” continued Minister Moniz. “Results of that sampling were received earlier this afternoon and demonstrate that all of the samples were of good quality. Those results are being posted on the Ministry of Health and Environment’s homepage on the Government portal.”

2014 bermuda water samples

Minister Moniz continued, “I must stress that the presence of greaseballs does not necessarily mean the water is contaminated. We have to separate the issues of grease being discharged from the Seabright outfall from any potential public health risks posed by waste discharge.

“At this point I would like to give you some insights into what is being done both short-term and long-term to address these two issues.

“The Minister continued, The best way to address the issue of grease being discharged from the outfall is to prevent it being introduced in the first place. The Department of Health, the Corporation of Hamilton, and the Ministry of Public Works are all taking steps to limit grease being dumped down the drain by restaurants and homeowners.

“Longer term, the Corporation and Public Works are working together to ensure the effective collection and disposal of fats, oils and grease from any restaurant that ties into the Corporation’s outfall.”

Minister Moniz’s full statement follows below:

Good Afternoon Everyone,

Late yesterday evening it was noticed that greaseballs had appeared on two South Shore beaches.

As a result, Parks crews visited the beaches first thing this morning to remove the greaseballs.

Although inclement weather is forecast this week with 20 to 30 knot winds from the east south east, and high seas making swimming unlikely, the department of health wishes to advise users of these beaches that greaseballs were observed washing ashore late yesterday evening.

The origin of these greaseballs is the Seabright outfall approximately 1 1/2 km upwind. The typical April seasonal weather pattern has recurred. Greaseballs washed ashore almost one year to the day on April 16, 2013 in very similar meteorological conditions.

The Department of Health sampled the water at a number of beaches on Monday. Results of that sampling were received earlier this afternoon and demonstrate that all of the samples were of good quality. Those results are being posted on the Ministry of Health and Environment’s homepage on the Government portal.

Additional samples will be taken this week and results will be made available to the public.

As a reminder, I committed in my last press conference, to post water sample results as close to real time as possible and to alert the public if two consecutive samples were outside accepted standards. Since April 2013 all of the samples taken have been within the standards. As a result no alerts have been issued.

I must stress that the presence of greaseballs does not necessarily mean the water is contaminated. We have to separate the issues of grease being discharged from the Seabright outfall from any potential public health risks posed by waste discharge.

At this point I would like to give you some insights into what is being done both short-term and long-term to address these two issues.

The best way to address the issue of grease being discharged from the outfall is to prevent it being introduced in the first place. The Department of Health, the Corporation of Hamilton, and the Ministry of Public Works are all taking steps to limit grease being dumped down the drain by restaurants and homeowners.

Longer term, the Corporation and Public Works are working together to ensure the effective collection and disposal of fats, oils and grease from any restaurant that ties into the Corporation’s outfall.

In addition, Public Works is well-advanced in converting from a primary treatment process to a two-stage process. The new installation will be commissioned in the second half of the year. Monitoring of effluent discharge is being implemented to measure output from the Tynes Bay facility to the main sewer.

As I said the second issue that must be addressed is public health issues related to waste disposal. There again, short-term and longer term solutions are being addressed.

In the short-term, the Corporation of Hamilton is actively investigating the introduction of an enhanced primary treatment facility which will remove solids, fats, oils and grease from the waste stream and provide a treatment mechanism for the elimination of human pathogens.

Longer term options for physically extending the outfall, which has been in existence for almost 100 years, are being explored. This combination of enhanced primary treatment and extension of the outfall should provide even greater assurances for our water quality. The introduction of the sewage treatment system at King Edward will serve to enhance these improvements.

To summarize, all stakeholders are working together to find sustainable solutions which include:

  • Improvement of sewage waste handling at Tynes Bay Septage Facility where investments in a new plant are being made;
  • Improved grease collection from City restaurants;
  • The introduction of enhanced primary treatment of waste by the Corporation of Hamilton
  • Extension of the Seabright outfall
  • Sewage treatment at KEMH is now online; and
  • Twice weekly monitoring of bathing water quality will continue by DoH.

Thank you.

-

Share via email

Read More About

Category: All, Environment, News, Politics, Videos

Comments (54)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

Articles that link to this one:

  1. Photos: ‘Greaseballs’ Wash Up At Grape Bay | Bernews.com | April 16, 2014
  1. Betty Dump says:

    The water is fine… but there is s*!t all over the sand. But don’t worry people, everything is fine… What a crock of nonsense

    • Al says:

      At least it is getting handled after decades of inaction.

      • OKAYMAN says:

        Is it?

      • BETTTY TRUMP says:

        this is a poor management and inaction of the govt to address this issue swiftly and quickly. This bad mis-management of this situation is hurting our dying pony of tourism and killing our most important resource….the beaches…. Come on OBAubp get it together if your able or capable…REALLY

        Betty dump, I see you loving me more….

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          And when it was brought to the attention to your infallable PLP while they were in power and the economy was doing well, what did they layout for a strategy to deal with it… oh yes, that is right, they didn’t and we suffer from it still today.
          Irregardless of what was not done in the past, it now taking a stage, however, since other matters have required the governments attention, given the limited resources currently available and the time it will take to design and develop an effective strategy, much less implement it, it will be awhile yet before the problem can be resolved.
          Course we all know you are more interested in critizing the current government than actually finding ways to help Bermuda and Bermudians, you just hope every day to drag us back under your infallable PLP’s righteous leadership. I leave you with parting thought, if you think it is such a tremendous failing by the OBA to have not dealt with this issue in the year and 5 months they have in power, why was the PLP not able to resolve it in their 14 years?

          The challenge is now to the OBA to present us with a solution, or a series of solutions to cope with this issue, but if it is to be an effective one, it may take a few months to get their answer.

          • frank says:

            before you go off this problem was here long before 1998 ask the corporation of Hamilton as long as the boop did not show up on grape bay all was fine

    • Mike Hind says:

      ANY evidence that what they’re saying isn’t true?

      Anything at all?

      • Redo says:

        So you’re ok swimming with balls of sh** floating by you? If so, my toilet is open for your swimming pleasure – stop by, bring the kiddos.

        • Mike Hind says:

          How does asking for evidence equate to “I’m ok swimming with balls of sh*t floating my me”?

          Come on. Try a little honesty.

          You’re being ridiculous.

          And evasive.

          • Come Correct says:

            Mike…honestly…grease balls on shore smelling like s***. If they’re grease balls they’re grease balls. If they’re grease balls that smell like s***, chances are they’re grease balls laced with s***. Some HONESTY from the government would be nice.

            • Mike Hind says:

              What does that have to do with what I asked?

      • OKAYMAN says:

        Dear Mike

        I would love to believe them. I am an OBA supporter but when it comes to the health of my children, party allegiance is dead in the water. The fact is that the greaseballs arrived today. I would like to see the water tested TODAY. I would like the greaseballs themselves tested. Stop covering backsides OBA, Stop playing the blame game PLP. We need a concerted strategy to deal with this issue and that is going to require investment.

        • OKAYMAN says:

          Also the beach is still covered in greaseballs

      • Betty Dump says:

        Mike… I often agree with your points… But lets be honest… Take politics out of this… There are sh!t balls on the sand… I dont care what the water tests say…

        • Mike Hind says:

          So… no, then. No evidence that they’re lying.

          Got it.

          Asking people to back up claims is playing politics.

          Amazing.

          • Sickofantz says:

            Hey Mike why don’t you go for a swim in Snorkel park tomorrow? I mean there is no evidence that it would be bad for you?

            • Mike Hind says:

              It’s amazing to me that the simple act of asking if someone has evidence of their claims is met with this sort of response.

              Why is integrity so frowned upon?

              I haven’t taken a position on this. I simply asked a question.

              Why the freakouts?

              And I’m Bermudian.
              I don’t go swimming before 24th of May anyway.

            • Mike Hind says:

              And did you miss the part where it was only at 5cfu/100ml yesterday?

              It’s clean.

            • Eye of Horus says:

              Snorkel park’s beach needs to be filled in. Just look at high the levels are there. It’s sad that it’s cruise passengers’ first impression of a Bermuda beach. We’re lucky they don’t know it’s past.

          • ya right says:

            Why are you okay with shite balls in the water of our beaches? Would you be okay with your children swimming and playing in the water and the sand with shite balls? Heck would you honestly feel safe taking a swim?

            How are you defending the OBA or any party when they are letting folk dump “raw” sewage in our water.

            Who wants to swim in water with floating balls of shite. This is disgusting.

            • Eye of Horus says:

              It’s in a sheep’s nature to follow.

              • Mike Hind says:

                Says the sheep who spouts propaganda at every turn.
                Glass houses, sir.

            • Mike Hind says:

              Did you even read my posts? Seriously.

              Never said I was ok with anything, nor did I defend anyone.

              I asked a question.

              Please address what I said, not something you made up.

    • Shaka Zulu says:

      Thats the same s— that was washing up also the last “opteen” years betty dump! how can you sell Bermuda as a tourist attraction when you have kibbles and bits,bits ,bits washing up on our shores..Perhaps the tourists can take some back as a reminder of Bermuda instead of the pink sands???LOL

  2. Kangoocar says:

    Ok thanks Min Moniz for the update but, I have to ask why you had the Mayor of Hamilton there?? Isn’t he the same one that sent $50 Grand to that scam artist who claimed she was representing the Black Mayors??? He was the last to know it was a scam, so I have to ask what on earth could he be contributing to this matter?? If he was to stupid to NOT see the biggest scam on the COH, again I ask, what could he be contributing to this??????

  3. Say no to irresponsible waste disposal says:

    They should be ashamed of themselves! Irresponsible disposal of waste is detrimental to our environment & compromising our ocean’s integrity & should not be tolerated.

    Stop being lazy, irresponsible and cutting corners & formulate proper disposal of ALL waste. Hold them accountable and implement fines if standards are not met & reward those that exceed these standards.

  4. Ride says:

    There are a lot of jobs on the line. A lot of pressure for a good result. Let’s keep the fingers crossed that the actions of the government and the message of the Tourism Authority is well and widely received.

    Ride

  5. Think... says:

    79 for snorkel park??? does that mean no one should be swimming over there??

    • no, you think... says:

      It means you should tell people swimming there to stop urinating in the water.

  6. OKAYMAN says:

    I’m afraid this is a crock of grease balls! There were no grease balls on the beach Yesterday and I strongly question that they were collected Yesterday. Where did this chart come from?

  7. Of course they could be coming from shipping lanes…ships are known to discharge trash at sea…perhaps a zizable reward for ships staff of crew that supply pictures as it happens giving latitude and longitude,and dates.

  8. Rhonda Neil says:

    all my 50 years of life grease balls where synonymous with crap or shite balls, now the OBA has given them a new meaning… do I believe my lying eyes or just trust the OBA…

  9. OKAYMAN says:

    Umm Rhonda you know this isn’t a new problem don’t you?

  10. Sickofantz says:

    OMG the above chart say Stay Away from Snorkel park at ALL costs. Frankly I feel morally obliged to inform the cruise ship companies of these results. Hope the US consul hasn’t seen it!

  11. nuffin but the truth says:

    I’ve read some cr@p in my life,but these people should ALL RESIGN!

    STOP LYING to People.

  12. Skeptic says:

    The source of all turds? – can the great green legged one let us all know please?

  13. Nicky Gurret says:

    Can a reporter or the Health Department inform us what 79 at Snorkel Park means. Also how does the results in our water compare to the Jersey Shores, a California Beach in Venus beach, the Hudson river and a beach in Bahamas or similar. Can we have the Health Department or an investigative reporter do a comparative study.

    All of a sudden the US Consul is warning all American citizens about swimming in Bermuda. What has changed from say 2 years ago or ten years ago? It would be good to understand what the readings are on South Beach Miami Beach or similar.

    • Bernews says:

      We have a request in for more info on the Snorkel Park results, so hopefully can update later

  14. Coffee says:

    More fart talk from the preeminent experts on Bermudas version of the Exxon Valdez disaster .

  15. Lick My Chicken says:

    that pic is EPIC. they all look so sad like they everyone of them just took a s**t and are greased up or maybe they all have greaseballs LOL

  16. cruise sht says:

    can somebody say for sure that one or more of the visiting cruise ships are not dumping near bermuda upon arriving or departure ´ very near? i think it would make sense as for the timing have seen similar washes in other cruise ship ports ! Maybe just maybe a gov monitor should be placed to over see this practice and fine the parties responsible ! As far as the idiots ruining hamilton they should enjoy going for a swim along with the one that suggested buiding more condos in hamilton with out first adressing the sewage problem with any luck let the grease balls stay at grape bay someone once told me don´´t shte on your door step!

    • somuchless says:

      What cruise ships? They’re all bypassing Bermuda.

  17. Alvin Williams says:

    I am Temped as far a Grape Bay is concern to state a plague on your house given the long time exclusivity of that beach; but this problem can not be divorce from the rest of Bermuda. Lots of grim faces on the part of the OBA government; but I wonder what has happen to the much beloved OBA slogan; ‘ The urgently of now?

  18. Terry says:

    It’s all the UBP’s fault…………………………..
    Bawahaaaaaaaa

  19. HEY DIS BIE HERE says:

    what about the greaseballs in the government ?

  20. Real Talk (original) says:

    Yeah, yeah. Greaseballs.

    But WTF happened at Snorkel Park on April 8th and how did the matter ‘resolve’ by the following day?

    • mangotree says:

      Since that beach is often full of cruise ship tourists, it would normally be all of them peeing in the water. But I’m not sure if a cruise ship was in that day. Maybe a busload of tourists instead. Mind you, it is still less than the 104 US EPA limit.

  21. SERZ TALK says:

    Yikes….Looks like someone took an aqua dump up snorkel park on 08/04/14.

  22. Ricardo Cardoso says:

    Bernews – Here’s a bit of investigative reporting to task you with.

    We all know that its in the government’s best interest to publish statistics that show favourable testing conditions, thereby playing down the “issue”. However, what is not clear to me is the process around taking the water samples in the first place.

    I’ll elaborate:

    If the sewage outfall extends 1 1/2 km from the shoreline and the wind is coming in from a south westerly direction, then how do we know whether the sampling is being taken from the west end of the beach, when the contamination is likely most prevalent on the east end of the beach (once you factor in the wind direction)? Are the samples spread over an area? Do they factor in wind direction when deciding where to take the samples from? Would be interesting to find out. Am also curious as to whether independent testing would reveal the same results…

  23. come on says:

    can’t re just recycle the poo? it 2014 im sure it can be used to make somthing.

  24. watcher55 says:

    Oh come on call it like it is, the only “greaseball” here is the one doing the talking at the podium who is full of what’s actually on our beaches…lets clean it up!

  25. OKAYMAN says:

    In Trevor Moniz’s earlier statement about sewage on April the 2nd he said the acceptable rate per /100 ml is 35 why has this changed?