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Home > NIEA > Waste and Resources > Waste Management Licensing Authorisations > Waste Management Licensing Exemptions

Activities exempt from Waste Management Licensing

Last updated: 29 April 2015

Some activities involving waste materials are exempt from licensing if they meet the requirements detailed in Regulation 17 of the Waste Management Licensing Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2003 as amended by the Waste Management Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006. Although an activity may be exempt from waste management licensing, it is still subject to statutory controls to prevent environmental pollution and harm to human health by:

  1. Presenting a risk to water, air, soil, plants or animals
  2. Causing nuisance through noise or odours
  3. Adversely affecting the countryside or places of special interest.

It is an offence to carry out an exempt activity without it being registered or to carry out an activity in breach of registration obligations.


There are 49 exempted activities detailed in Schedule 2 Part 2 of the 2003 Regulations.

In Schedule 2, Paragraphs 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 12, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 29, 30, 31, 34, 36, 40, 44, 46 and 47 are relatively low risk activities and are termed 'Simple Exemptions'. These activities must be registered with us before they commence. A short explanatory guidance and an application form are available to download from our website.

Activities carried out under Paragraphs 9, 10(a), 10(b), 11, 13, 14, 15, 19, 45, 49, 50, 51 and 52 carry a higher risk to the environment and human health and are termed 'Complex Exemptions'. These activities must also be registered with us before they commence. A short explanatory guidance, technical guidance and a specific application form are available to download from our website.

There are certain exemptions which are not required to be registered. They are Paragraphs 27, 32, 33, 35, 37, 38, 39, 41, 42, and 43.

To assist us with processing your application efficiently, please ensure that you answer all the questions on the application form and submit the relevant documentation and fee (see fees and charges and a full list of Waste Codes below)

Incomplete applications will be returned to the applicant.

When we receive a complete registration application, we will determine whether or not the activity can be registered. Within 28 days you will receive either confirmation of the registration or notice that the registration has been refused.

To obtain an application form please contact Gary Tate on 028 9056 9358 or

An application can also be obtained by post by contacting us at the following address:

Waste Management Licensing Exemptions
Land and Resource Management
Klondyke Building
Cromac Avenue
Gasworks Business Park
Lower Ormeau Road
Malone Lower
Tel: 028 9056 9358
Fax: 028 9056 9376