Building & Development

Liquid Trade Waste

Liquid Trade Waste


Discharge of liquid trade waste to the sewerage system is managed by council in accordance with the NSW Office of Water’s Liquid Trade Waste Regulation Guidelines.

What is liquid trade waste?

Liquid trade waste is a liquid waste produced by a business, commercial or industrial activity. It excludes domestic waste from a hand washbasin, shower, bath or toilet. It also excludes stormwater and unpolluted water.

Liquid trade waste includes liquids from:

  • Industrial premises
  • Business/commercial premises (e.g. beautician, florist, hairdresser, hotel, motel, restaurant, butcher, service station, supermarket, dentist)
  • Community/public premises (including school, college, university, hospital, nursing home, craft club)
    trade activities (e.g. mobile carpet cleaner, graffiti removalists)
  • Any commercial activities carried out at a residential premise

Liquid trade waste also includes waste from saleyards and racecourses, and from stables and kennels not associated with domestic households.

Why is liquid trade waste regulated?

  • Sewerage systems are designed to transport and treat domestic sewage. Sound liquid trade waste management is needed to:
  • Protect the environment
  • Protect the health and safety of the public and workers
  • Protect community assets
  • Protect the sewerage system  

Protecting the environment

Some substances, such as metals or pesticides, may pass through the treatment facilities unchanged and accumulate in the environment. This can have adverse affects on local animals, plants and waterways and greatly impact on fragile ecosystems.

Protecting the health and safety of the public and workers

People working in and around the sewerage system can be harmed if toxic substances are discharged into the sewer.

Protecting community assets

Effective trade waste management helps protect sewer mains, pumping stations and sewage treatment facilities from damage by trade waste.

Protect the sewerage system

This improves performance and reduces the frequency of odour complaints and sewer chokes. Grease, oil and solid material—if not removed on-site—can cause blockages in the sewerage system and result in overflows of untreated sewage into the environment or into a residential or commercial property. Strong waste can also cause odour problems and corrosion of the sewage pipes and systems.

Effective trade waste management also improves cost recovery i.e. it improves the commercial pricing of sewerage and liquid trade waste and removes cross-subsidies. This reduces annual sewerage bills as the improved sewerage system performance will ‘free up’ system capacity.

To effectively manage liquid trade waste in our environment, council and businesses in Gosford City must work together to achieve and maintain an effective trade waste management system to protect and ensure the sustainability of our environment for the future.

Your responsibility as a business in Gosford City

  • A business discharging trade waste into a Gosford City Council sewer must obtain approval to do so from council.
  • Either the owner of the premises or the tenant who carries out an activity on the premises may apply for approval. The tenant must have the owner’s written consent in order to apply for approval.
  • A discharger is responsible for pre-treating their waste to a level acceptable for discharge to the sewer.
  • To assist applicants, council can provide information on the type of pre-treatment needed for various trade waste generating activities. 

View all of council's Liquid Trade Waste Applications.

Trade waste fees and charges

The transport, treatment and monitoring of liquid trade waste involves significant capital and operating costs. These costs are recovered from liquid trade waste customers through annual and usage charges.

The fees and charges required from your business are weighted according to categories. Council has three broad categories of charges for liquid waste:

Category 1 - discharges requiring nil or minimal pre-treatment
Category 2 - discharges requiring prescribed treatment
Category 3 - large discharges (over 20 kL/day) and industrial waste

Current trade waste fees and charges are presented in council’s list of Fees and Charges.

Further information

Sewerage and Liquid Waste Discharge Factors

Liquid Trade Waste Policy

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