What Waste Paperwork Should I Have on File?

There are many requirements and rules surrounding waste management and disposal that can be quite confusing to follow.  This blog will explain some of the paperwork you will need in place to make sure your waste is disposed of correctly.

Your waste contractor

When selecting a waste contractor, you need to make sure they have the correct permits and licences in place to deal with your waste legally.  When appointing a waste contractor, you must make sure they have a Waste Carriers Licence.  This allows the waste contractor to carry waste on the public highway and is issued by the regional environmental regulator (such as the Environment Agency).  This document usually expires every three years, so you need to make sure that the copy you keep on file is always up to date.  You will need copies of carriers licences for every contractor who collects any of your waste and for any company that arranges waste collections on your behalf (acting as a broker).

You will also need a copy of the permit or licence for the site where your waste is being taken to; it could be an Environmental Permit, Waste Management Licence or exemption.  As well as keeping the licence on file, you will need to check to make sure the site has permission to accept the waste.  You will need to have a licence for every site your waste is taken to.

Waste transfer documentation

Waste can only leave your site when you have all the above waste contractor information on file.  When collecting the waste, you must complete the correct waste transfer documentation, usually provided by your waste contractor.  They are legal documents and must be completed correctly, checked and signed by a responsible person from your site.  For non-hazardous waste, this will be a Waste Transfer Note and for hazardous waste, it will be a Hazardous Waste Consignment Note.  For hazardous waste, you should receive a quarterly return from your waste contractor, confirming where the waste has gone and whether it was accepted.  All this waste information must be kept on file for at least two years for non-hazardous waste and three years for hazardous waste.

Legally, you have a duty of care to ensure your waste is managed correctly and legally.  When you appoint a waste contractor to take your waste away, you still have obligations to ensure your waste is being dealt with properly and you need to keep certain documents on file to prove this.  Paperwork will include waste carriers licences for all waste contractors collecting waste, environmental permits or licences for the sites where waste is taken to and the correctly completed waste transfer documentation.