If you transport waste, or arrange the transport of waste for others, it’s likely that you will need to register with SEPA as a waste carrier, broker, or professional collector and transporter of waste. The definitions below will help you identify what you need to register as.
A waste carrier is a person (or establishment or undertaking) that transports controlled waste in the course of carrying out business activities with a view to profit. Transporting waste includes taking it from job to job, to a storage site, or taking it to somebody else who manages or disposes of it. A registration is required even if carrying waste is not the main business activity or waste is only carried occasionally.
Some examples of activities that would require registration as a waste carrier are:
- collection and transport of waste from businesses;
- collection and transport of waste from households such as garden waste, bulky waste, or house clearances;
- transporting your own construction and demolition waste;
- transporting waste from a household or business as part of a job. For example, taking away garden waste after doing a garden maintenance or landscaping job.
Waste brokers arrange for other businesses' waste to be handled, transported, disposed of or recovered. This is regardless of whether or not the broker handles the waste themselves. This includes businesses that arrange for waste disposal on behalf of another business or waste producer.
Some examples of activities that would require registration as a waste broker are:
- waste management service providers who arrange the disposal or recovery of waste for other businesses;
- shopping centre managers who arrange for the removal of waste from rented premises;
- letting agencies or factors who arrange for the removal of waste from rented accommodation;
- a company that manages a train station that arranges the disposal or recovery of waste for train operators and / or shops in the station.
Professional collector and transporter of waste
A Professional collector and transporter of waste is any of the undernoted establishments or undertakings, if it collects and transports waste as a normal and regular part of its activities, such as a:
- waste collection, disposal or regulation authority;
- business that regularly transports its own waste (unless it is construction and demolition waste);
- charity or voluntary organisation;
- person who only transports animal by-products;
- person who only transports waste from mines and quarries or waste from agricultural premises.
Do I need to register?
If you transport other people’s waste in the course of your business activities (a “waste carrier”) or arrange the recovery or disposal of waste on behalf of others (a “waste broker”), you must be registered. In certain circumstances you will need to register as a Professional collector and transporter of waste.
If you are based in Scotland you must register with SEPA. If you are based in England or Wales, you should register with the Environment Agency or Natural Resources Wales respectively. If based in any other country, you must register with SEPA before carrying out these activities in Scotland.
How can I register or renew?
Waste carriers and brokers
You can register as a waste carrier or broker, or renew your existing registration, by visiting our application page. Applications can also be made by downloading a form and submitting this by email to SEPA. This method of application takes longer.
By registering, you are demonstrating to your customers that you are compliant with waste regulations and are committed to moving and disposing of waste in a safe, responsible manner. Registration also helps stop waste criminals who profit at the expense of legitimate businesses by undercutting them and competing unfairly.
Once registered, you will receive a unique registration number. Be prepared to supply that number to clients on demand. SEPA will be able to confirm your registration to potential clients.
Failure to register, or check that others are registered, could result in enforcement action including a fixed monetary penalty (FMP).
If you are unsure whether you need to register, contact us.
Professional collectors and transporters of waste
Professional collectors and transporters of waste can register for free and the registration lasts indefinitely unless it is withdrawn or revoked.
If you use our online application system to apply, you will automatically receive an email that will contain your registration. The registration will also be added as a PDF attachment for ease of use. If you apply via email, you will receive a PDF of your certificate of registration by return email.
At present we cannot issue copy cards for waste carriers or brokers.
How can I check who is registered?
You can check on our registered waste carriers list or contact us to search for details of any currently registered carrier or broker. Contact us if you can't find the registration you are looking for.
Note that waste carriers and brokers based in England and Wales should be registered with the Environment Agency or Natural Resources Wales.
- Fixed monetary penalties
- Temporary regulatory position statement - waste carriers and brokers