Waste data

Service status

A sophisticated criminal cyber-attack has had a major impact on the way SEPA works. We are working through all the services that we provide to understand what we need to do in the short and longer term to restore services. We are approaching this work with a sense of urgency.

Service status update: Data returns

What are we able to do now?

Many environmental licences include a requirement to submit data returns or other reporting requirements on an annual or quarterly basis.

What should you do now?

We are now actively reviewing many of the data returns and kindly request you to submit any outstanding returns for the following areas:

Scottish Pollutant Release Inventory (SPRI):

SPRI returns for the 2021 calendar year are due by 28 February 2022.

We will contact SPRI operators by email using the SPRI contact’s address in January 2022 to confirm contact details. We will then provide an excel form for each site, to be returned by email to SPRI.Administration@sepa.org.uk by 28 February 2022.

Where we don’t receive a response by email, we will look for a suitable alternative and may contact you by phone or letter to request more information.

Waste Data Flow (WDF):

The WDF data submissions and SEPA data validation tool are not impacted and operating as usual. Please submit your data as usual. Please send any queries to wastedata.flow@sepa.org.uk

Licensed Site Returns (waste) and Material Recovery Facility Code of Practice Returns:

Please submit any outstanding returns to waste.data@sepa.org.uk as soon as possible. Submitted returns should be representative of the same reporting periods as stated in your licence or permit, data should not be consolidated in one single return. Following this, please revert to the standard reporting schedule. Additional detail, reporting guidance, and current reporting forms are available on our website.

Waste Exemptions (waste):

Please submit any outstanding returns to waste.data@sepa.org.uk as soon as possible.

Producer Responsibility (PR):

For businesses who are required to submit Producer Responsibility (PR) data, please continue to use the relevant UK system to submit your data. SEPA is also now able to receive data submissions via the Producer.Responsibility@sepa.org.uk mailbox.

Other returns not mentioned above:

For any other returns required by your SEPA licence and not covered above, in most cases we are able to receive these and are proactively contacting licence holders to request submission. In the interim, if you wish to submit a licence return not covered above, please contact us for advice on the most appropriate means of submission.

For the avoidance of doubt, you should continue to report any environmental incidents as required by your SEPA permit by contacting our 24 Hour Pollution Hotline: 0800 80 70 60.

Waste data

SEPA is responsible for reporting national waste statistics to the Scottish Government and European Union among others. As regulator, SEPA also has a duty to assess whether waste management sites comply with the conditions of their licence or permit.

To do this, SEPA collects and verifies data from a number of sources, mainly:

  • Operators of all licensed and most permitted waste management sites
  • Operators of certain activities exempt from full waste management licensing
  • Local authorities.

A strategy for improving waste data in Scotland, also known as the Waste data strategy 2017, aims to deliver Scotland's current and future waste data needs as we move towards a more resource-focused future. Written in partnership by SEPA, Zero Waste Scotland and Scottish Government, it outlines what we will achieve and how we are going to co-ordinate and deliver a plan that will support Scotland's transition to a more circular economy, where products and materials are kept in high value use for as long as possible.

Most of the data are presented as interactive tools with tables and charts that can be filtered to suit. All the data are available in Excel format.

SEPA also collects and reports on offsite transfers of waste from industrial sites through the Scottish Pollutant Release Inventory (SPRI).