Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Waste carrier, broker and dealer registration

Waste carrier, broker and dealer registration

Waste carriers transport controlled waste as part of their business. Waste brokers arrange for other businesses' controlled waste to be handled, transported, disposed of or recovered. Waste dealers use an agent to buy waste from other businesses to sell it on.

Controlled waste includes commercial, industrial and household waste, as well as hazardous/special waste.

This guideline covers:

  • The regulations for Northern Ireland
  • The regulations for Scotland

Regulations for Northern Ireland

From 8 April 2011, new regulations introduced a two-tier registration system for waste carriers. Waste carriers transport controlled waste as part of their business. Waste brokers arrange for other businesses' controlled waste to be handled, transported, disposed of or recovered. Waste dealers buy waste from other businesses to sell it on. This includes dealers who do not take physical possession of the waste.

Upper tier carrier registration

If you transport other people's waste, or your own construction or demolition waste, you must register with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) as an upper tier waste carrier, unless you fall into one of the categories for lower tier waste carriers.

If you do not register and you carry waste, you could be prosecuted, unless you are exempt.

Lower tier carrier registration

Lower tier registration replaces registration as a professional collector or transporter of waste.

You must register as a lower tier waste carrier, broker or dealer if you only deal with:

  • animal by-products
  • waste from mines or quarries
  • waste from agricultural premises.

You must also register in the lower tier if you carry, broker or deal in waste and are:

  • a waste collection, regulation or disposal authority
  • a charity or voluntary organisation.

You will also need to register as a lower tier carrier if you normally and regularly carry controlled waste produced by your own business, other than construction or demolition waste.

Broker and dealer registration

If you are a waste broker, ie you make arrangements for others to have waste handled, transported, recovered or disposed of, you must:

  • register as a waste broker with the NIEA
  • make sure that any waste that you are brokering or have control of is stored and transferred in compliance with the duty of care.

If you deal in waste, i.e. you use an agent to buy waste from other businesses to sell on, you must register with the NIEA.

Waste carriers, brokers and dealers

NIEA: Waste carriers and brokers information

Regulations for Scotland

Waste carriers transport controlled waste as part of their business. Waste brokers arrange for other businesses' controlled waste to be handled, transported, disposed of or recovered. Waste dealers use an agent to buy waste from other businesses to sell it on.

Controlled waste includes commercial, industrial and household waste, as well as special waste.

You must register as a waste carrier, broker or dealer with the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) if you plan to transport other businesses' controlled waste, or arrange for other businesses' controlled waste to be handled, transported, disposed of or recovered. You must also register if you want to transport your own building or demolition waste.

You must register as a professional collector and transporter of waste, rather than a waste carrier, if you only transport:

  • animal by-products
  • waste from mines and quarries
  • waste from agricultural premises.

You must register as a professional collector and transporter of waste, if you carry waste and are a:

  • waste collection, disposal or regulation authority
  • charity or voluntary organisation
  • business that regularly transports its own waste (unless it is construction and demolition waste).

It is free to register as a professional collector and transporter of waste, and your registration lasts indefinitely unless it is revoked or withdrawn.

It is a new requirement for businesses that regularly transport their own waste to register. You will soon be able to register online. SEPA recommends you delay your registration until the online system is available. If you need to register sooner, download the application form to register as a professional collector or transporter from the SEPA website.

SEPA: Registration as a professional carrier of waste (PDF, 54K)

To check if you need to register and find out about exemptions, see the pages on Waste carriers - who needs to register? and Waste brokers or dealers - who needs to register? in our guideline:

Waste carriers, brokers and dealers

Further information

NIEA: Registration of waste carriers and brokers

NIEA: Registered waste carriers database

SEPA: Waste carriers and brokers information

SEPA: Who is registered?

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Permits

NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms