Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Disposal to a public sewer

Disposal to a public sewer

What you must do

You must get a trade effluent consent or enter into a trade effluent agreement with your water and sewerage company before you discharge any trade effluent to the public sewer.

This is important even if you only discharge a small amount of liquid waste, as it could cause serious damage to the sewage system and create a risk of danger to public health.

A trade effluent consent allows you to discharge liquid waste to the public sewer. This means that the contents of your trade effluent can be safely treated by the waste water treatment plant.

A trade effluent agreement is needed if your discharges contain substances that require work to be carried out by your water and sewerage company.

Apply to your sewerage provider for a trade effluent consent

You will need to apply to your water and sewerage company if you want to discharge trade effluent into the public sewer, or to a private sewer that connects to a public sewer

Water UK: Contact your water company

Scotland on Tap: Water and sewerage providers in Scotland

You may also need authorisation from the NIEA in Northern Ireland or SEPA in Scotland to discharge some trade effluents to sewer. These include effluents from installations that have a pollution prevention and control (PPC) permit. You must comply with any requirements on your permit for discharging effluents

Contact your environmental regulator

In this Guideline

How to deal with Trade Effluent

Disposal top a public sewer

Dealing with effluent that cannot go to foul sewer

Disposal to land where no public sewer is available

Disposal to water where no public sewer is available

Using septic tanks and package treatment plants

Reducing and treating your trade effluent

Avoiding spills and unauthorised effluent discharges

Trade effluent environmental legislation

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NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms