Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Waste exemptions for chemicals

Waste exemptions for chemicals

You may need to register an exemption with your environmental regulator from waste management licensing if you carry out an exempt waste management activity.

Some exemptions do not need to be registered although you must comply with the exemption's conditions.

Activities exempt from waste management licensing

Exempt waste operations and exempt waste management activities which may apply to chemicals manufacturing businesses include:

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland
Using waste without further treatment. For example, use of some waste paint as paint within certain limits in a Community Repaints project. Paragraph 16
Must be registered.
Paragraph 15
Must be registered.
Storing any waste (non-hazardous or hazardous/special) temporarily on the site where it is produced in a secure place for no longer than 12 months. For example, waste solvents, waste oil, plastic packaging, paper and cardboard. Paragraph 41
There are quantity limits for storing hazardous waste.
No need to register.
Paragraph 41
There are quantity limits for storing special waste.
No need to register.


You must check whether your registered exemption needs to be renewed. Some registered exemptions last for as long as the activity is carried out while others may only last for 12 months.

If you are not sure whether your waste operation or waste management activity is covered by a registerable exemption, or how long an exemption will last, contact your environmental regulator for further advice.

Contact your environmental regulator

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms