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Trade Effluent and Discharge Monitoring
Companies who discharge liquid effluents or wastewater to a sewer are likely to require a trade effluent consent to do so. This consent to discharge is usually granted by the local water company.

The receiver of the waste is required, by law, to accept the effluent as long as it conforms to certain standards. They are permitted to levy a charge for this service and, in Scotland, the makeup and level of charges is regulated by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA).

The Legislation

The current legislation in Scotland is:

The Sewerage (Scotland) Act 1968
The Provision of Water and Sewerage (Scotland) Act - Reasonable Costs (2006)
Water Industry (Scotland) Act 2002

In addition, if your process is authorized under Integrated Pollution Control legislation then the discharges you make to sewer will also be considered as part of that authorization.

Trade Effluent Consent & Consent Conditions
The receiving company will apply standards or restrictions to the flow, strength and character of your effluent discharge. These conditions form part of the Trade Effluent Consent.

Typical trade effluent discharge consents will include the following conditions:

  • The maximum permitted daily flow (m3/day);
  • The maximum hourly flow (m3/hour);
  • The permitted pH range (typically 5 - 9);
  • The maximum biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) or chemical oxygen demand (COD) value expressed as milligrams of oxygen requirement per litre of effluent (mg/l);
  • The maximum concentration of suspended solids (SS) in mg/l

Whether you require BOD or COD limit will depend upon the scale of your discharges relative to the size of your local sewage works.
In addition, depending upon the nature of your processes you may also have limits imposed on the amounts of:

  • Oil present (mg/l);
  • dissolved metals such as copper, nickel, zinc, etc (ug/l);
  • organic chemicals such as phenols, etc. (mg/l)

Caledonian Laboratories Limited offer a wide range of trade effluent monitoring services - with quality, cost and turnaround times as the main focus. 

We understand that you need to know that your trade effluent is complying with consent conditions; that you need to know it quickly; and that you need to know the analysis is both accurate and reasonably priced.

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