Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Who can deal with your waste

Who can deal with your waste?

You must ensure that anyone who handles your waste has the correct permit, registration or exemption.

Your transporter of waste has to be registered with SEPA or NIEA; and anyone who recycles, treats, stores, reprocesses or disposes of your waste must have:

  • either a waste management licence or pollution prevention and control (PPC) permit,
  • or a registered exemption from waste management licensing for your type of waste and what they do with it.

Find your nearest waste site 

Check your waste carrier is registered

Anyone who collects and transports your waste must be either:

  • a registered carrier of controlled waste
  • exempt from registration as a waste carrier
  • in Scotland, on the register of professional collectors and transporters of waste

This will include your local council's waste collectors of waste.

People who may be authorised to collect your waste include:

  • waste contractors
  • scrap metal merchants
  • recycling businesses
  • your local council
  • skip hire businesses

You must check that your waste carrier is registered or holds an exemption. You need to keep evidence of this so you can prove you have checked if necessary.

Ask to see your waste carrier's certificate of registration or a certified copy of it, which will show when their registration expires. Photocopies do not provide evidence of registration. You can take a photocopy of the certificate for your own records, date it and write on it that you have seen the original. In Scotland, authorised credit card sized copies of the certificate are also acceptable proof of registration.

NIEA: Registered carriers / transporters database

SEPA: Registered waste carriers and brokers

In Scotland, certain types of organisation and carriers of certain waste types, such as animal by-products waste, mines and quarry wastes, and agricultural waste, are exempt from waste carrier registration but still need to go on a register of professional collectors and transporters of waste. They won't have a certificate, but they should still be able to provide proof of registration in the form of a letter confirming their registration.

SEPA: Online applications for registration as professional collector or transporter or waste, and for waste carrier 

If you transport your own waste

In Northern Ireland if you only transport waste produced by your own business, you do so normally and regularly, and that waste is not construction or demolition waste, you must be registered with the NIEA as Lower Tier Carrier of controlled waste; registration is free. If you transport your business waste but that is construction and demolition waste, you must be registered with the NIEA as Upper Tier.

DAERA NI: Register as a Lower Tier carrier

DAERA NI: Registration of carriers and brokers

In Scotland if you normally and regularly transport waste produced by your own business, you must register with SEPA as a professional collector or transporter of waste. If you transport your own construction or demolition waste you must usually register as a waste carrier instead. Register online.

SEPA: Online applications for registration as professional collector or transporter or waste, and for waste carrier 

Further information

NetRegs: Duty of Care for waste (Scotland) leaflet (PDF - 997KB)

NIEA: Registered carriers - database

SEPA: Registered waste carriers and brokers - database

NIEA: Waste duty of care – a code of practice

NIEA: Waste duty of care - a short guide

Scottish Government: Duty of care - a code of practice

Find your nearest waste site

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Permits

NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms