Liquid trade waste

Icon Water has a legal requirement to manage discharge of Liquid Trade Waste to protect public health, safety of personnel, the environment and Icon Water's sewerage infrastructure and operational processes.

Icon Water's Liquid Trade Waste Acceptance Policy and Guidelines help achieve this by defining which liquid trade waste can be safely discharged into the sewerage network.

As such, our customers have a legal obligation to ensure they comply with Icon Water’s Liquid Trade Waste Acceptance Policy and Guidelines.


  • What is Liquid Trade Waste?

    Waste must meet the following two criteria to be classified as Liquid Trade Waste;

    • The waste must be liquid in nature; and
    • Not be classified as domestic sewage (e.g. waste typically produced in the course of daily residential living)

    Some examples of activities generating liquid trade waste are listed below;

    Industrial and Manufacturing processes (e.g. cement, glass, paint, pharmaceuticals)

    Trade services (e.g. mechanics, mobile carpet cleaners)

    Commercial businesses (e.g. beautician, florist, hairdresser, hotel/motel, restaurant, brewery, butcher, service station, supermarket, dentist)

    Saleyards, racecourses, stables, kennels, vet clinics

    Community services (e.g. hobby clubs, schools, universities, hospitals, nursing homes, fire stations)

    Nightsoil (e.g. septic, chemical toilet waste, pan content from mobile homes/caravans, ship-to-shore pump outs)

  • What do I need to do?

    You are required by law to submit a completed Application form with relevant drainage plans to Icon Water.

    Note: There are currently no fees payable to submit an Application and receive Approval for Liquid Trade Waste.

    In order to comply with Icon Water’s Liquid Trade Waste Acceptance Policy and Guidelines you need to;

    • Identify your business activities and understand the type and volume of waste generated from each activity that drains to the sewerage network.

    • Review the relevant Icon Water Liquid Trade Waste Acceptance Guidelines to understand the controls required for your liquid trade waste.

    • Submit a completed Application Form with relevant drainage plans to Icon Water for assessment.

    • Receive your Approval from Icon Water BEFORE discharging to sewer and ensure all requirements continue to me be met over time.

  • How do I submit an application?

    1. Download the Application form from the Icon Water website or pick up a copy from the Icon Water Office (12 Hoskins Street, Mitchell).

    2. Obtain a current (or proposed) drainage plan* that clearly identifies all points that discharge to sewer and all locations and connections of any pre-treatment devices.

    3. Complete the Application form, making sure all sections are answered and the form is signed by the Property Owner (or authorised representative) and the Property Occupier.

    4. Submit the completed Application form and drainage plans to Icon Water via one of the following methods;
      1. In person to; Liquid Trade Waste Team, 12 Hoskins Street, Mitchell 
      2.   In the post to; Liquid Trade Waste Team, GPO Box 366, Canberra, 2601

    *You may be able to obtain a copy of your building drainage plan from Access Canberra (Mitchell Shopfront - (02 6207 1923), otherwise a plumber or hydraulic consultant may be able to assist.

  • How will I know if my application is approved?

    Icon Water will contact the nominated person within 10 days of receipt of the Application.

    It is important to clearly indicate the preferred contact method on the Application form for the person nominated to receive the Approval.

    Note: Icon Water will not issue copies of the Approval to any other parties except those nominated on the Application form.

  • What happens if I don't have approval?

    All liquid trade waste must, by law, be approved by Icon Water before discharge. Every property owner and/or business must gain approval prior to allowing liquid trade waste discharge to sewer.

    In the ACT, the Utilities (Technical Regulation) Act 2014 stipulates that it is an offence to interfere with, or likely interfere with, the safe or efficient operation of the sewerage network, facility or the environment.

    Discharges entering a sewer that are in breach of the Icon Water’s Liquid Trade Waste Acceptance Policy and Guidelines will probably constitute a breach of the Act and may lead to prosecution of the person discharging the waste, or allowing the waste to be discharged. Significant fines, imprisonment or both may result. 

    Existing Businesses with No Liquid Trade Waste Approval

    If you believe you do not have a current Approval for your business, please contact Icon Water to discuss a plan to become compliant with the current Icon Water Liquid Trade Waste Acceptance Policy and Guidelines. 

  • How can I get in contact with the Liquid Trade Waste team?

    You can contact the team via email or over the phone as follows:


    Phone: (02) 6248 3222