Supporting the proper reduction and recycling of trade waste will help businesses to ensure that they minimize any negative impact to the environment. There are a number of laws that provide specific requirements on how to establish the correct disposal of commercial waste. The enforcement of these laws will help negate any health and safety risks that these waste can impact on the sewage system and the environment.
Defining Trade Waste
What exactly is trade waste? It is commonly defined as liquid waste that is produced by industries and commercial establishments, which are discharged into the sewer system based on the requirements of local authorities. Any business that does trade, commercial, industrial, or experimental processes in all probability has some type of trade waste.
The responsibility of these businesses is to ensure that they meet their legal obligations based on existing laws. This means that you are not only required to have commercial waste bins, but also have an existing agreement or consent from authorities to discharge waste into the sewer. The agreements specify what are allowed for commercial waste disposal including any pre-treatment and monitoring activities needed.
Treatment plants that handle warehouse and factory clean-outs are normally concerned with the reduction of nitrogen production from its source.
The Trade Waste Agreement
This is a requirement for all businesses that discharge conditional trade waste. The terms and conditions covering the conditional trade waste discharge must be satisfactorily met. The length of time covered by an agreement would normally last up to 5 years.
The most important component of securing a trade waste agreement is the ability to submit a trade waste management plant. The plan outlines the full details of how the industrial, commercial, or rental property clean-ups would be carried out. This helps to immediately identify the possible risks that any unauthorized clean-up can pose to the wastewater system. The management plan should include detailed activities that will help to mitigate the risks in case the environment is impacted.
It is important to understand that the waste management plan for a large complex activity would obviously differ from that of a smaller and simpler activity. The management plan should likewise reflect all of the specific activities that will be done on the site that will be relevant to responding to threats like environmental spills for example.
Monitoring of the Discharge
It does not matter if you are thinking of small machinery removal like computers, printers and faxes or hospital furniture and machinery, there are minimal requirements that must be satisfied for the trade waste discharge. The conditional trade waste customer must always monitor the discharge and provide the results to the authorities as part of the compliance requirements.
Additional monitoring mechanisms are always encouraged especially for establishments that involve the testing of chemicals. The reports containing the results of the monitoring will help the authorities determine whether any type of threat exists.
Types of Agreements
Because of the variety of businesses that secrete commercial waste, there are also different types of agreements. This is to ensure that all industries and business activities are covered by the proper regulations. What are these agreements?
- Industrial Waste – the trade agreement that is issued to these types of activities cover the resulting waste effluent relative to the production practices and operation of the establishment. Those belonging under these agreement are considered as medium to high risk.
- Commercial Waste – the consent given to commercial trade waste holders are designed to help target the management of risks that are associated with the disposal of greasy and oil food waste into the sewage system, this does not cover partitions, notice boards, shelving, and other office furniture. This means that those falling under this type of agreement are usually the restaurants, food outlets, bakeries, and even butchers among others.
- Food Waste – this agreement may sound similar to the commercial waste agreement, but the commercial waste collection under this type is geared towards the customers and relates to the proper disposal of food waste as well as the use of food disposal units and vegetable peelers.
- Tankered Waste – this agreement permits any EPA licensed waste transporter to pick up and dispose waste that is siphoned from septic tanks to identified dumping points following a regular schedule.
- Emergency Trade Waste – for special circumstances, this is a one-time agreement allowing the discharge within a specific time period only.
Application for Agreement
If you have phones and photocopiers, filing cabinets and any other unwanted waste, there are services that cater to these. However, what do you do if you want to properly dispose your trade waste? You have to apply for a trade waste agreement.
In filling out a form, you have to make sure that every section contains the complete information requested. Additional requirements like process diagrams and site plans must also be submitted. This will eliminate unnecessary delays in the application process. Normally it would take around 20 working days to secure an approval.
What are the factors considered in approving a trade waste agreement application? These would include information relating to:
- Volume, quality, and rate of discharge;
- Controls that are in place;
- Compliance history;
- Local conditions and network;
- Receiving wastewater treatment plant;
- Legal requirements covering the treatment and disposal;
- Health and safety compliance; and
- Extent of reaction that the trade waste will cause with other contents within the wastewater system.
The management and treatment of waste within the sewer system can be adequately handled by professional services. Proper management of trade waste is essential to safeguarding not only the environment, but human health in general. During office strip outs, there are many types of waste that are generated and the disposal of these are handled by professionals. So why shouldn’t you call for professional help in handling trade waste?
Be clear though that trade waste does not cover wastewater coming from private residences. There may be another law or other requirements covering that. However, to manage the risks associated with trade waste, guidelines set in the trade waste agreement should be followed to the letter. What would be the result if you follow these guidelines? You can successfully prevent:
- Sewage spills;
- Sewer blockages and clogging;
- Damages to sewage infrastructure;
- Disrupting sewage treatment;
- Health risks to sewer workers; and
- Environmental threats.
It may not sound easy, but, if you follow all of these, you can be sure that you will be managing your trade waste properly.