If you want to transport other people's controlled waste, or your own construction and demolition waste, you must register with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) as a waste carrier. In Northern Ireland there is a two-tier registration system for waste carriers.
Controlled waste includes commercial, industrial and household waste, as well as hazardous waste. Most radioactive wastes and explosive wastes are controlled by other regulations.
How to register as a waste carrier or broker
All businesses can register as waste carriers including self-employed individuals, partnerships, companies or other types of organisation. You need to register even if carrying waste is not your main business activity or if you only carry waste occasionally.
If you do not register and you carry waste, you could be prosecuted.
Upper tier waste carriers
If you transport other people's controlled waste, or your own construction or demolition waste, you must register as an upper tier waste carrier unless you fall into one of the categories for lower tier waste carriers.
Lower tier waste carriers
You must register as a lower tier carrier if you only carry:
- animal by-products
- waste from mines and quarries
- waste from agricultural premises
You will also need to register as a lower tier carrier if you carry waste, and are:
- a waste collection, disposal or regulation authority
- a charity or voluntary organisation
Lower tier carriers are also known as 'specified persons'.
You also need to register as a lower tier carrier if you normally and regularly carry controlled waste produced by your own business.
Exemptions and exclusions from waste carrier registration
You do not need to register as a waste carrier if you:
- move waste between different places on your own site
- export waste by sea or air from the UK to outside the UK (however, you will need to register to transport waste to the port or airport)
- import waste from outside the UK into the UK, and the waste is landed in its final location (however, you will need to register to transport the waste anywhere by land, eg by train or lorry)
- are a ferry operator transporting waste-carrying vehicles
- operate vessels, aircraft, hovercraft, marine structures, floating containers or vehicles that carry waste and have a marine licence or marine licence exemption