...Use oil and fuels

Did you know?  


  • The legal limit for hydrocarbon in water discharge is roughly one drop of oil in 2l of water (15mg/l).


  • A single litre of fuel can contaminate over a million litres of water.


  • Oil is toxic to fish and water species. Prolonged exposure affects reproduction, growth and feeding of aquatic life, even at low concentrations.


  • The majority of oil pollution in our rivers and oceans comes from every day sources like refueling, engine emissions and oil leaks.




  • The most effective way to clean oily bilge water is to use an oil absorbent sock.


  • Check bilge water for contaminants before routine pumping.


  • Use a funnel when pouring fuel or oil.


  • Good maintenance of fuel lines, connections and seals helps avoid leaks.


  • Transfer used oil or waste fuel in proper containers and dispose of in oil waste facilities.


  • Dispose of all oily or fuel-soaked materials in the hazardous waste containers.


  • When fuelling, avoid topping off or overfilling to reduce the risk of fuel overflowing from vents. Allow room for expansion in the tank.


  • Never use detergents to deal with spills – it may disperse the fuel or oil and save you embarrassment, but they can be more toxic to aquatic life than the oil itself.


  • Avoid using oil and fuel on the pontoons, other than on those dedicated to refueling. Off the boat, the Government recommends a distance of at least 10m from the water.


Useful information


The Oil Bank Line will give you your nearest oil disposal centre: www.oilbankline.org.uk 


The Environment Agency website has lots of facts about oil and the environment: www.environment-agency.gov.uk/oilcare    


If you see a pollution incident, report it through the Environment Agency’s 24 hour a day pollution hotline – 0800 80 70 60