Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Waste exemptions for recycling and reprocessing

Waste exemptions for recycling and reprocessing

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 12
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

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Permits

NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms