Disposing of your waste
As a commercial business, you must dispose of your waste correctly. Scots law states that commercial businesses are responsible for making sure all their own waste is disposed of properly.
If you run your own business you should either obtain your own waste carriers’ license from SEPA or ensure that whoever removes your waste has their own waste carriers’ license before the waste leaves your premises (they will have a certificate they can show you as proof they are registered to carry waste).
Alternatively you can find the registered carriers in your area by visiting the SEPA website.
In addition, the ultimate destination for your waste should be a site covered by a waste management license. Please contact the Scottish Environment Protection Agency or visit Netregs for further details.
Construction and demolition waste is the fourth highest type of waste flytipped across Scotland. How businesses manage their waste can affect their reputation and operating costs.
The Duty of Care legislation requires that all transfers of waste are appropriately recorded in order to assist in tracking movements of waste. In addition the regulations place additional obligations on waste producers, carriers and any person within the chain of persons handling waste to consider the manner in which they deal with the material.
As a business, you have a legal responsibility to ensure that you produce, store, transport and dispose of your business waste without harming the environment. This is called your duty of care.
The duty of care has no time limit. You are specifically responsible for your waste from when you produce it until you have transferred it to an authorised person. If you think that your waste is not being managed correctly you must take action to check and prevent this.
- store and transport your waste appropriately and securely – see the pages in this guide on how to store waste correctly and transporting waste
- check that your waste is transported and handled by people or businesses that are authorised to do so – see the page in this guide on how to check your waste is dealt with correctly
- complete waste transfer notes to document and describe all waste you transfer, and keep them as a record for at least two years – see the page in this guide on how to complete waste transfer notes
If your business carries out work at private households, any waste you produce is classed as business waste and you must treat it as such. This includes waste you collect when you deliver new items.
If you use contractors who create waste on your site, it is good practice to ensure that your contract clarifies who has responsibility for the waste.
If your business is home-based, any waste you produce from your business activities is classed as business waste. You must keep it separate from your household waste and complete waste transfer notes when it is collected or disposed of.
Practical advice and support for businesses can be found on the Business Gateway website where further resources are available.
Find out what happened to those who didn’t dispose of their waste properly and were caught in here.