What is Trade Effluent?


Trade effluent services and advice

The Sewerage (Scotland) Act 1968 defines trade effluent as any liquid waste ’which is wholly or in part produced in the course of any trade or industry’ that is then discharged to the public sewer

To discharge this kind of waste, a customer must have consent from Scottish Water. Applications for consent are made to the relevant retailer, and their trade effluent team can help them through this process.

What is a trade effluent consent?

A trade effluent consent (TEC) is a legal document issued by the authorised authority (in this case Scottish Water) to control the quality and quantity of trade effluent discharged to the public sewer.

The consent controls the volume of effluent as well as the rate at which it can be discharged.

Why is it important to manage Trade Effluent?

Here are 4 key reasons why Trade Effluent management is important:

  • to protect people that work in the sewer (ammonia is toxic if inhaled)
  • to protect the fabric of the sewer (acids, alkaline liquids and sulphates can corrode concrete)
  • to prevent overloading or blocking of the sewers (too much volume or fat blocking the sewer can cause flooding)
  • to prevent explosive atmosphere’s in the sewer (solvents can ignite in the sewer)

Can we help?

Are you over-paying on Trade Effluent? Is your existing consent set at the right level? If your consent has not been reviewed for a few years, you may easily be paying over the odds.

How to apply

To apply for consent (or change your existing consent) you can download the appropriate application below.



Once you’ve completed your consent form, you can email it to us at tradeeffluent@brightwater.com

What happens next?

We’ll process your application as quickly as we can. Please complete all required fields on your application form.

Scottish Water will contact you directly to issue your consent, and your annual costs will vary according to their findings.

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