Liquid trade waste

Icon Water is working with our customers to understand the best mechanisms (including pricing mechanisms) to manage liquid trade waste in the ACT. We are currently planning our next phase of consultation. To register your interest in being involved, please email us.


All non-domestic sewage (also known as "trade waste" or "liquid trade waste") must, by law, be approved by Icon Water before discharge. This also includes discharges from sewage recycling plants, cooling towers, rainwater filters, garbage bin enclosures, pumped sewage and stormwater run-off directed to the sewer. Every business must gain approval to discharge their sewage to sewer, prior to discharge.

Icon Water are required 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 by defining which liquid waste can be safely discharged into the sewerage network. Icon Water also has a legislative requirement to manage Liquid Trade Waste. Icon Water's Liquid Waste Acceptance Policy and Liquid Waste Acceptance Guidelines apply to the discharge of waste (other than domestic sewage and wastewater arising from domestic water use) into Icon Water's sewerage network.

In accordance with the Icon Water Liquid Waste Acceptance Guidelines, it is our policy to:

  • Prohibit certain types of waste from being discharged into the sewerage system.
  • Accept liquid waste that meets specified parameters.

How to get approval

Approval of discharge is specific to each individual business. In order for Icon Water to assess whether or not sewage can be discharged to sewer, customers must fill out an Application for non domestic discharge to sewer and supply comprehensive details of sewage discharge. Download the form from the Form Centre on the right hand panel.

Application forms are also available at 12 Hoskins Street Mitchell or can be ordered by calling 02 6248 3111.

Icon Water's approach to the acceptance of liquid waste is consistent with frameworks applied in other parts of Australia and as recommended in the Australian Guidelines for Water Recycling (EPHC 2006) and the National Waste Water Source Management Guidelines (WSAA 2008). Under section 35 of the Utilities (Technical Regulation) Act 2014, it is an offence to discharge into the water or sewerage network any substance that is likely to interfere with the network, or form compounds that would be likely to interfere, unless the consent of the utility is obtained. Significant fines, imprisonment or both may result from an offence. Discharges entering a sewer that are in breach of the acceptance guidelines will probably constitute a breach of section 35 of the Utilities (Technical Regulation) Act 2014 and may lead to prosecution of the person discharging the waste, or allowing the waste to be discharged.