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Commercial waste - information and advice

Businesses have a legal obligation to take all reasonable steps to ensure the safe disposal of their waste.

Under the Environment Protection Act 1990, businesses have a duty of care to ensure their waste is collected, treated and disposed of responsibly. This includes residents that are running a business from home.

Businesses must separate their waste for disposal and recycling and store it in suitable containers.

Waste carriers and transfer notes

You can fulfil your duty of care by arranging for a registered waste carrier to collect or treat / dispose of your business waste.

The Environment Agency keeps registers of companies that can recycle or dispose of your waste and companies that can collect your waste. If a company cannot provide evidence or being a registered waste carrier, do not use them.

They will give you a waste transfer note, which outlines the type and amount of waste collected. If repeated collections are made, you can have a waste transfer note that covers a period of up to one year. You must keep the waste transfer note for a minimum of two years.

More information on the duty of care for businesses can be found at:

GOV.UK - business and commercial waste

Environment Agency - Duty of Care

Environment Agency Public register Search


Updated: 18 Oct 2017
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