Dangerous ‘Palm Oil Fatbergs’ washing ashore on Ireland’s east coast

Published by Ian Carey on

February 15th 2017

Without a doubt Ireland’s most crazily named environmental problem was announced today by Fingal County Council.

The local authority put out a press release warning locals to beware of ‘Palm Oil Fatbergs’.

This bizarre phenomenon is where lumps of palm oil, in some cases as big as boulders, have washed ashore along the North Dublin coast.

These ‘fatbergs’ are a threat to dogs and children as the blocks of fat are covered in germs.

The press release from Fingal County Council explains where they come from:

“Fingal County Council has issued a warning for people to be vigilant for ‘Palm Oil Fatbergs’ which may be washed up along the coast as they can be particularly dangerous to dogs.

“A number were found on Sunday at Hoare’s Rock, Skerries, and results from laboratory tests have showed that the substance was Palm Oil. It is believed that the Palm Oil was part of a consignment which came off a ship in the English Channel about 18 months ago and was washed ashore by the weekend storm.

“The congealed substance has been turning up sporadically on beaches and coasts in England but this is the first time it has been recorded in Fingal. A Fingal County Council spokesperson said: “We believe the discovery of this material in Skerries on Sunday is an isolated incident as we have not had any other sightings along the Fingal coastline.

“The material is a solid white substance which is known as a ‘Palm Oil Fatberg’ and they can range in size from being as small as a golf ball to as big as a boulder. We are asking the public to be vigilant as this substance can be harmful to dogs.”

IMAGE: One of the ‘Palm Oil Fatbergs’ washed up at Hoare’s Rock, Skerries, last weekend. Source Fingal County Council

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Ian Carey

Ian is the editor of the Green News. He works as Communications Manger with the Irish Environmental Network.