Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Waste exemptions by sector

This guidance details information on waste exemptions, categorised by sector.

 

Additional resources

   

If you keep, treat or dispose of waste you must have a waste management licence or exemption.

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

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

Activities exempt from waste management licensing

Waste exemptions for agricultural businesses

It is likely that you will need to register some waste exemptions so you can carry out your day-to-day business. There are around 60 waste exemptions available.

DAERA has produced a list of waste exemptions that apply to the agriculture sector in Northern Ireland.

DAERA: Agricultural waste exemptions

Waste operations or activities that farmers carry out, and their exemption references, include:

Description of exempt waste activity or operation

Northern Ireland

Scotland

Burning as a fuel, under a permit granted under the PPC regulations, of straw, poultry litter or wood (at less than 1 tonne per hour in Northern Ireland) (Applies to biomass boilers)

Paragraph 5

Paragraph 3

Treatment and cleaning of agricultural packaging or agricultural containers so that they can be re-used

6

4

Burning agricultural waste as fuel in appliance or appliances

7

3

Preparatory treatment of agricultural wastes intended for recovery or re-use

12

27

Manufacture from agricultural waste and treatment of agricultural waste soils

14

13

Manufacture of finished goods from agricultural waste

15

14

Storing agricultural wastes intended for recycling or recovery, in secure containers

18

18

Spreading of dredgings and plant material cleared from Inland Waterways

25

25

Baling, compacting, shredding or pulverising agricultural waste at the place of production

27

27

Storing returned agricultural goods

28

--

Burning agricultural waste in an exempt incinerator

29

29

Burying waste from a portable toilet

32

32

Storing agricultural medicines and medical, nursing and veterinary waste

39

39

Burning untreated wood and plant matter in the open

30

30

Incorporating ash from open waste burning into the soil

30

30

Using waste for a specific purpose, for example using shredded paper, sawdust or wood shavings as animal bedding

16

15

Storing waste within certain limits and for certain periods of time in a secure place for recycling or recovery

17

17

Treating waste plant matter or wood by chipping, shredding, cutting or pulverising it

21

21

Land treatment for agricultural benefit or ecological improvement (on agricultural land)

9

7

Land treatment of non-agricultural land for ecological improvement

9

7

Storing sewage sludge to be spread on agricultural land

10

8

Spreading diluted milk on land for agricultural benefit

47A

7

Deposit of plant tissue at the place of production

47B

7

Disposal of waste pesticide solution or washings in a lined biobed where the waste was produced

See next

42

Disposal of agricultural waste consisting of non-hazardous pesticide solution or washings in a lined biobed

47C

See previous

Mixing of ash from the incineration of pig or poultry carcases with manure for use in land treatment

47D

50

Further information on waste exemptions for agriculture

Activities exempt from waste management licensing

Your environmental regulator provides more details about exemptions for agricultural waste.

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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

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 fabricated metal products businesses include:

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland
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 oil or off-cuts. 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.
Treating waste on the site where it is produced as long as you don't change the physical, chemical or biological nature of the waste. For example baling, compacting or shredding waste. Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Heating metals and metal alloys to remove grease, oil or any other non-metal contaminant using a furnace with a total rated thermal input of less than 0.2 megawatts. Paragraph 44
Must be registered.
Paragraph 44
Must be registered.
Recovering scrap metal. Paragraph 45
Must be registered.
Paragraph 45
Must be registered.

 

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 an exemption, or how long an exemption will last, you should 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

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 be relevant to forestry businesses include:

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland
Chipping, shredding, cutting or pulverising waste wood or bark. Paragraph 21
Must be registered.
Paragraph 21
Must be registered.
Burning untreated wood waste in the open. Paragraph 30
Must be registered.
Paragraph 30
Must be registered.
Burning some waste wood or bark as a fuel in a small appliance in certain cases. Paragraph 5
Must be registered.
Paragraph 5
Must be registered.
Composting untreated waste wood. Paragraph 13
Must be registered.
Paragraph 12
Must be registered.
Using untreated waste wood as mulch. Paragraph 9
Must be registered.
No exemption needed.
Using waste wood or bark to make products. Paragraph 15
Must be registered.
Paragraph 15
Must be registered.
Spreading waste wood for benefit on the site where it is produced. For example to suppress weeds or provide nutrients to the soil. Paragraph 9
Must be registered.
No exemption needed.
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. 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.
Burning as a fuel, under a permit granted under the PPC regulations, of straw, poultry litter or wood (at less than 1 tonne per hour in Northern Ireland) (Applies to biomass boilers) Paragraph 5 Paragraph 3

 

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 an exemption, or how long an exemption will last, you should 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

Forestry Commission: Managing brash on conifer clearfell sites (Adobe PDF - 2.34MB)

Forestry Commission: Planning controlled burning operations on forestry (Adobe PDF - 1.47MB)

Forestry Commission: Burning forest residues (Adobe PDF - 1.15MB)

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 management activities which may apply to hunting, shooting and game breeding businesses include:

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland
Burning untreated wood and plant matter in the open Paragraph 30 Paragraph 30
Composting biodegradable waste, and storing waste for composting. Paragraph 13 Paragraph 12
Treating waste plant matter or wood by chipping, shredding, cutting or pulverising it. Paragraph 21 Paragraph 21
Treating waste pesticide solution or washings in a lined biobed or filter No exemption Paragraph 42
Storing any waste (non-hazardous or hazardous/special) temporarily on the site where it was products in a secure place for no longer than 12 months. For example, tyres, wood, paints. 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.
Burning waste in an incinerator with a capacity of less than 50kg per hour at the place where it was produced, eg farmed animal carcases, untreated waste wood. Paragraph 29
The incinerator must have a rated thermal input of less than 0.3 megawatts
Paragraph 29

 

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 you can register an exemption for your waste operation or waste management activity, or how long an exemption will last, contact your environmental regulator for further advice.

Contact your environmental regulator
Storing waste

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

What you must do

If you keep, treat or dispose of waste you must have a waste management licence from your environmental regulator.

You may be able to register an exemption from the need to have a waste management licence for certain activities. If you operate under an exemption you must still ensure that your activity does not:

  • endanger human health or cause pollution to water, air or soil
  • constitute a risk to plants or animals
  • cause a nuisance in terms of noise or odour
  • adversely affect the countryside or places of special interest.

There are over 60 exemptions from the need for a waste management licence.

Exemptions relevant to landscaping

You may be able to chip, shred, cut or pulverise waste plant matter for recovery or reuse but the quantity of waste that is dealt with in any seven-day period or quantity stored at any one time must not exceed 1,000 tonnes.

You may be able to burn wood, bark or other plant matter on the site where the waste was produced if you burn less than 10 tonnes in 24 hours. You must not produce dark smoke.

You may be able to spread biodegradable wastes and soil from gardens and parks to agricultural land as long as it provides agricultural or ecological improvement to the land. You may also be able to spread these wastes on certain non-agricultural land, such as woodland, parks, gardens, verges, landscaped areas, sports or recreation grounds, as long as it provides ecological improvement.

If you have an exemption, you must comply with the exemption conditions.

Further information

NIEA: Waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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 machinery or electrical and electronic equipment businesses include:

Exempt waste operation or activity Northern Ireland Scotland
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 oil or off-cuts 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.
Treating waste on the site where it is produced as long as you don't change the physical, chemical or biological nature of the waste. For example baling, compacting or shredding waste Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Heating metals and metal alloys to remove grease, oil or any other non-metal contaminant using a furnace with a total rated thermal input of less than 0.2 megawatts Paragraph 44
Must be registered.
Paragraph 44
Must be registered.
Repair or refurbishment of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) Paragraph 49
Must be registered.
Paragraph 47
Must be registered.
Recovering scrap metal Paragraph 45
Must be registered.
Paragraph 45
Must be registered.

 

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 an exemption, or how long an exemption will last, you should 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

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 metals production and processing businesses include:

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland
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, off-cuts, sand from casting processes. 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.
Treating waste on the site where it is produced as long as you don't change the physical, chemical or biological nature of the waste. For example, baling, compacting, crushing or shredding waste paper or cardboard or cans. Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Heating metals and metal alloys to remove grease, oil or any other non-metal contaminant using a furnace with a total rated thermal input of less than 0.2 megawatts. Paragraph 44
Must be registered.
Paragraph 44
Must be registered.
Running a scrap metal furnace. Paragraph 4 Paragraph 2
Must be registered
Recovering scrap metal. Paragraph 45
Must be registered.
Paragraph 45
Must be registered.

 

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 you can register an exemption for your waste operation or waste management activity, or how long an exemption will last, contact your environmental regulator for further advice.

Storing waste

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing
SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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

In Northern Ireland, you can register an exemption under paragraph 33 for keeping or depositing waste from peatworking.

Northern Ireland Environment Agency: Keeping or deposit of waste arising from peatworking

In Scotland, you can register an exemption online under paragraph 33 for keeping and depositing peat waste.

SEPA: Paragraph 33 exemption - Keeping and depositing peat waste

SEPA: Registration form for a simple exemption

Non-extractive waste

Exempt waste operations and exempt waste management activities which may apply to non-extractive waste at mines or quarries include:

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland

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, off-cuts.

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.

Treating waste on the site where it is produced as long as you don't change the physical, chemical or biological nature of the waste. For example baling, compacting or shredding waste.

Paragraph 27
No need to register.

Paragraph 27
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 an exemption, or how long an exemption will last, you should 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

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

Exempt waste activity or operation Exemption reference
Northern Ireland Scotland

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, paper and cardboard, cans, glass, waste cooking oil or plastic packaging.

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.

Treating waste where it is produced as long as you don't change the physical, chemical or biological nature of the waste. For example, baling, compacting, crushing or shredding waste paper or cardboard or cans, for recovery elsewhere.

Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Composting biodegradable kitchen and canteen waste.
If you do not meet certain conditions you will need an authorisation under the Animal By-Products Regulations to compost on your premises. See our guidance on food and catering waste from offices.
Paragraph 12
Must be registered.
Paragraph 13
Must be registered.

 

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

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 management activities which may be relevant to your businesses include:

Exemption reference

Exempt waste activity or operation

Northern Ireland Scotland

Baling, sorting or shredding up to 3,000 tonnes per week of waste paper or cardboard, for recovery or reuse

Paragraph 12
Must be registered
Paragraph 11
Must be registered
Manufacturing products from waste paper or cardboard, up to 15,000 tonnes used or stored at any one time Paragraph 15
Must be registered
Paragraph 14
Must be registered
Composting biodegradable waste Paragraph 13
Must be registered
Paragraph 12
Must be registered
Burning some waste wood or bark as a fuel in a small appliance in certain cases Paragraph 5
Must be registered
Paragraph 5
Must be registered

Recovery of waste and return to the production process

Paragraph 26
Must be registered
Paragraph 26
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
Burning as a fuel, under a permit granted under the PPC regulations, of straw, poultry litter or wood (at less than 1 tonne per hour in Northern Ireland) (Applies to biomass boilers) Paragraph 5 Paragraph 3

If you want to use waste pulp or paper for treating land, the following exemptions may apply:

  • treating agricultural land with waste bark and wood, pulp from virgin timber, de-inked paper sludge, de-inked paper pulp from paper recycling and lime mud waste
  • treating forests, woodlands, park gardens, verges, landscaped areas, sports grounds, recreation grounds, churchyards or cemeteries with waste bark and wood, and pulp from virgin timber.

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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

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 be relevant to your businesses include:

  Exemption reference
Exempt waste activity or operation Northern Ireland Scotland
Storing waste in secure containers in certain cases, eg storing up to 3 cubic metres of waste oil Paragraph 18
Must be registered
Paragraph 18
Must be registered
Storing waste for recovery or recycling in a secure place in certain cases, eg storing up to 500 tonnes of waste plastic for up to 12 months Paragraph 17
Must be registered
Paragraph 17
Must be registered
Storing sludge in certain cases, eg storing residual sludge from septic tanks Paragraph 10A and 10B
Must be registered
Paragraph 8
Must be registered
Storing waste (non-hazardous or hazardous/special) temporarily on the site where it is produced in a secure place for no longer than 12 months, eg 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
Cleaning, washing, spraying or coating waste packaging and containers in certain cases, eg paper and cardboard packaging Paragraph 6
Must be registered
Paragraph 4
Must be registered
Laundering and cleaning textiles for recovery Paragraph 12
Must be registered
Paragraph 20
Must be registered
Treating waste by baling, sorting, shredding, pulverising, crushing or compacting it, eg cans and foils, glass, and food and drink cartons Paragraph 12
Must be registered
Paragraph 11
Must be registered
Treating waste wood and waste plant matter for recovery, by chipping, shredding, cutting or pulverising Paragraph 21
Must be registered
Paragraph 21
Must be registered
Treating waste bricks, tiles and concrete by crushing, grinding or reducing in size Paragraph 24
Must be registered
Paragraph 24
Must be registered
Recovering scrap metal Paragraph 45
Must be registered
Paragraph 45
Must be registered
Repairing and refurbishing WEEE Paragraph 49
Must be registered
Paragraph 47
Must be registered
Treating certain waste for reuse or recovery, eg bicycles, clothing, furniture, wooden pallets Paragraph 15
Must be registered
Paragraph 14
Must be registered
Recovering silver from printing and photographic waste Paragraph 22
Must be registered
Paragraph 22
Must be registered

 

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing
SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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 that may apply to retail and wholesale businesses include:

  Exemption reference
Exempt waste activity or operation Northern Ireland Scotland
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, paper and cardboard, cans, glass, waste cooking oil or plastic packaging. 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.
Treating waste where it is produced as long as you don't change the physical, chemical or biological nature of the waste. For example, baling, compacting, crushing or shredding waste paper or cardboard or cans. Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Paragraph 27
No need to register.
Treating waste plant matter or wood by chipping, shredding, cutting or pulverising waste at the place where it was produced. Paragraph 21
Must be registered.
Paragraph 21
Must be registered.
Composting biodegradable kitchen and canteen waste. Paragraph 12
Must be registered.
Paragraph 12
Must be registered.
Cleaning and storing waste textiles or clothes for recovery or reuse. Paragraph 20
Must be registered.
Paragraph 20
Must be registered.
Storing waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) other than at the place it was produced for recovery elsewhere. Paragraph 40
Must be registered.
Paragraph 48
Must be registered.
Repairing or refurbishing WEEE. Paragraph 49
Must be registered.
Paragraph 47
Must be registered.
Storing waste medicines and medical waste, such as hypodermic needles and syringes, at a pharmacy. Paragraph 39
No need to register.
Paragraph 39
Must be registered.

 

If you dismantle waste vehicles as part of your business activities, please see our guidance for sites that accept waste vehicles.

If you sell food and drink you will have to dispose of food waste which may contain animal by-products. Check our guidance for retailers and wholesalers on food and catering waste to make sure you dispose of this waste correctly.

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 you can register an exemption for your waste operation or waste management activity, or how long an exemption will last, contact your environmental regulator for further advice.

Contact your environmental regulator

Storing waste

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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

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 be relevant to road transport businesses include:

  Exemption reference
Exempt waste activity or operation Northern Ireland Scotland
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 oil, waste solvents, waste tyres, 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.
Dismantling depolluted waste vehicles for vehicle parts, eg waste vehicles from which potentially polluting substances or parts such as oil, fuel, antifreeze or batteries have already been removed. Paragraph 45
Must be registered.
Paragraph 45
Must be registered.
Crushing and emptying waste vehicle oil filters where they are produced. No exemption needed. No exemption needed.

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 an exemption, or how long an exemption will last, you should contact your environmental regulator for advice.

Contact your environmental regulator

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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 waste or sewage businesses include:

  Exemption reference
Exempt waste activity or operation Northern Ireland Scotland
Storing waste in secure containers in certain cases. For example, storing up to 3 cubic metres of waste oil. Paragraph 18
Must be registered.
Paragraph 18
Must be registered.
Storing waste in a secure place in certain cases. For example, storing up to 500 tonnes of waste plastic for up to 12 months. Paragraph 17
Must be registered.
Paragraph 17
Must be registered.
Storing sludge in certain cases. For example, storing residual sludge from septic tanks. Paragraph 10A and 10B
Must be registered.
Paragraph 8
Must be registered.
Cleaning, washing, spraying or coating waste in certain cases. For example, paper and cardboard packaging. Paragraph 6
Must be registered.
Paragraph 4
Must be registered.
Treating waste by baling, sorting, shredding, pulverising, crushing or compacting it. For example, cans and foils, glass and food and drink cartons. Paragraph 12
Must be registered.
Paragraph 11
Must be registered.
Recovering scrap metal. Paragraph 45
Must be registered.
Paragraph 45
Must be registered.

 

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 an exemption, or how long an exemption will last, you should 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

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

Some waste management activities involving the use of waste wood from processing non-virgin timbers are exempt.

Exempt waste management activities which may be relevant to your business include:

Exemption reference
Exempt waste activity or operation Northern Ireland Scotland
Composting untreated waste wood. Paragraph 13
Must be registered.
Paragraph 12
Must be registered.
Using untreated waste wood as mulch. Paragraph 9
Must be registered.
No exemption needed.
Spreading waste wood for benefit on the site where it is produced. For example to suppress weeds or provide nutrients to the soil. Paragraph 9
Must be registered.
No exemption needed.
Burning some waste wood or bark as a fuel in a small appliance in certain cases. Paragraph 5
Must be registered.
Paragraph 5
Must be registered.
Using waste for a specific purpose, for example wood shavings, woodchip and sawdust as animal bedding. Paragraph 16
Must be registered.
Paragraph 15
Must be registered.
Using waste wood or bark to make products. Paragraph 15
Must be registered.
Paragraph 14
Must be registered.
Chipping, shredding, cutting or pulverising waste wood or bark. Paragraph 21
Must be registered.
Paragraph 21
Must be registered.
Burning untreated wood waste in the open. Paragraph 30
Must be registered.
Paragraph 30
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. 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.
Burning as a fuel, under a permit granted under the PPC regulations, of straw, poultry litter or wood (at less than 1 tonne per hour in Northern Ireland) (eg biomass boilers) Paragraph 5 Paragraph 3
Burning some waste wood or bark as a fuel in a small appliance in certain cases Paragraph 5 Paragraph 5

 

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 an exemption contact your environmental regulator for further advice.

Contact your environmental regulator

Position statements

Wood waste regulatory position statement

The Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) has produced guidance on when they consider wood to be a waste and what regulatory controls should be followed.

NIEA: Environmental regulation of wood position statement

Wood produced from processing virgin timbers, such as off-cuts and sawdust from sawmilling or wood product manufacturing, are not considered to be waste if they are used for common purposes including:

  • woodchip in gardens or on pathways
  • a raw material for composting
  • animal bedding
  • fuel in an appliance
  • a raw material for the production of wood-based products or in paper production
  • If you mix virgin timber, including any materials produced from processing it, with other waste wood or any other waste, the mixed load will be waste and certain waste responsibilities will apply.

Your waste responsibilities

Good practice

Separate wood waste and wood-based materials into virgin wood and waste wood at the point of production. This will help you to reduce regulatory controls that apply to mixed loads.

Contact the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) who can give you more information on local businesses or organisations that can use wood-based materials in a manufacturing or recycling process.

WRAP: PAS 111 Processing waste wood

WRAP: RecycleWood – the sustainable wood information service

Materials produced from virgin timber processing could be burned to produce energy. Depending on its previous use and contaminant content, waste wood could also be burned as a fuel.

You should check whether you need a permit or licence or need to register an exemption to burn wood as fuel.

Energy and steam generation

Find a wood recycler near your site from the Wood Recyclers Association.

Wood Recyclers Association

Further information on waste exemptions

NIEA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

SEPA: Activities exempt from waste management licensing

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Permits

NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms