Trade waste discharge permits

A Unitywater Trade Waste Discharge Permit is required for a business that is currently or will be carrying out any of the following activities:

  • Discharging any liquid waste to Unitywater infrastructure, other than domestic waste (domestic waste is from a toilet, hand basin or a kitchen sink used for personal use).
  • Washing-up or cleaning any utensil or apparatus that is a component of the business and then discharging the waste into Unitywater infrastructure.
  • Conducting a commercial/ industrial process that produces a contaminated liquid waste (i.e. anything that is non-domestic liquid waste that contains chemicals or residue from a commercial or industrial process).
  • Having any pre-treatment devices installed on the property that will be connected to Unitywater infrastructure.

Permit Conditions

Most commercial and service industries will require some form of pre-treatment before the wastewater is allowed to enter the sewerage system.

We recommend you seek advice from a qualified Hydraulic Consultant who has trade waste experience about what type of pre-treatment your business may require before you apply for your permit.

Applying for a Trade Waste Permit

Unitywater has three types of Trade Waste Discharge Permits (high risk, medium risk and low risk) categorised by the level of risk associated with the waste.

Upon application, Unitywater will assess your level of risk and will assign the relevant Trade Waste Discharge Permit classification.

To apply for a Trade Waste Discharge Permit, please complete the Application for Approval to Discharge Trade Waste into sewer (PDF) and return it to Unitywater for processing.

Prior to submitting a plumbing application (to council) that incorporates trade waste, you should submit your application to Trade Waste with the applicable fee and attach a hydraulic plan detailing fixtures, Plan Assessment applicationloadings (proposed and current discharge to pre treatment device) and the pre treatment device details.

Updating your Permit

If you wish to make changes to your permit such as a change of mailing address or contact details, complete the Application for Approval to Discharge Trade Waste into sewer (PDF).

To update your permit due to Sale of Business/ Change of Ownership:

  1. The old owner is required to complete a Cancellation of Trade Waste Approval/ Permit (PDF) form
  2. The new owner is required to complete a Application for Approval to Discharge Trade Waste into sewer (PDF) form and will be sent an account for the annual permit fee.


Changing your Trade Waste Discharge Factor

A Trade Waste Discharge Factor is the percent of potable water discharged to Unitywater infrastructure. Should you require a review of the discharge factor applied to your property, complete the Application for variation to non-residential wastewater discharge factor (PDF)

Cancelling your Trade Waste Permit

If you would like to cancel a trade waste permit, complete the Cancellation of Trade Waste Approval/ Permit (PDF) form.

Before cancelling your permit, Unitywater will undertake a final site inspection and meter reading (if application) and issue a final account. 

Trade waste officers will require full access to your business site for the final inspection.


Please note, there are no refunds on any permit issued, and permits are not transferable.

Plan Assessment

If there is no current Trade Waste generator onsite, business owners are not required to complete the Trade Waste Application. However, business owners are required to complete the Trade Waste Plan Assessment.

Unitywater will supply written advice regarding compliance with our Trade Waste Management Plan in this instance.

Trade Waste Permit Fees

Fees apply for new trade waste discharge permits, changes to trade waste discharge permits and permit cancellations.

Please refer to Trade Waste charges for further pricing information.


If you have any questions regarding Trade Waste Discharge Permits please contact us.


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