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About Domestic Wastewater Treatment Systems Registration

The Water Services (Amendment) Act 2012 requires water services authorities to maintain a register of domestic waste water treatment systems in their functional areas. The Local Government Management Agency (LGMA) has developed a central on-line registration system and will manage the system on a shared-service basis for the water services authorities.

Under the Act, owners of domestic waste water treatment systems are required to ensure that their systems are on the register. Your registration will contribute to the protection of Ireland's ground and surface waters.

All septic tanks and other types of treatment and disposal systems for domestic waste water should be registered not later than 1st February 2013

What is the purpose of Domestic Wastewater Treatment Systems Registration?
The purpose of the registration and inspection system for domestic wastewater treatment systems, introduced under the Water Services (Amendment) Act 2012, is to protect ground and surface water quality (particularly drinking water sources) from the risks posed by malfunctioning systems. All owners of premises connected to a domestic wastewater treatment system are required to register their systems

Who has to register under the legislation?
All owners of domestic wastewater treatment systems are required to register their systems with the water services authority in whose functional area the systems are located. However, owners of properties connected to larger on-site systems which discharge in excess of 5 cubic metres per day do not need to register. Such systems, which serve sports clubs, pubs, hotels, guesthouses and other businesses require a licence from the relevant local authority under Section 4 of the Water Pollution Act 1997.

What is a domestic wastewater treatment system?
Domestic wastewater treatment systems include all septic tanks, waste water tanks and treatment systems receiving, storing, treating or disposing of domestic waste water. It also includes all fittings and percolation areas associated with such tanks and systems and drains used to discharge waste water from a premises, whether or not a receiving tank is present.

Where can I find out more information about the legislation and inspections?
For further information on the legislation and the inspection process:

The Water Services (Amendment) Act 2012:
Registration Regulations:,30599,en.pdf
The Department of Environment, Community and Local Government website:
The EPA Website:
and for further information:

Is my wastewater treatment system going to be inspected?
The Environmental Protection Agency is developing a National Inspection Plan. The Agency will use a risk-based approach in developing the plan. No decisions have been made regarding the numbers or locations of inspections to be carried out, or the risk-based criteria to be used when targeting those inspections.

Inspections under the new legislation will not commence until 2013 and the commencement of inspections will be publicised in the national and local media. You should take care not to allow uninvited persons, or persons claiming to be septic tank inspectors, to enter onto your property in advance of the launch of inspections. You will be formally notified by your water services authority if your domestic wastewater treatment system is to be inspected. Inspectors will be required to carry identification and you should ask for this to be presented to you.

What are the exemptions from having to register and pay the fee?
There are no exemptions. All owners of premises connected to domestic waste water treatment systems must register their system. This includes owners of properties which are let, whether private landlords or local authorities etc. and employers who provide living accommodation to employees.

Where an owner is unable to register, for example due to physical or mental incapacity, registration on their behalf should be made by the next-of-kin, legal representative or other authorised or appropriate person.

How much is the registration fee?

The registration fee is set at €5 for the first three months of the registration period and €50 thereafter. The offer of €5 finishes on 28th of September 2012.

How do I register and pay the registration fee?
Online - - by credit card/debit card.
By Post: Registration forms are available online; from City/County Councils; Libraries; Citizen Information Centres or Lo Call 1890 800 800.
Payment can be made by cheque, postal order or bank draft and made payable to “Protect Our Water". Send your form with payment to: Protect Our Water, P.O Box 12204, Dublin 7.
Local Authority Offices: Payment by credit or debit card or by cheque, postal order, bank draft or cash can be made in your City or County Council office (no administration fee will be charged by the Council for this).

When do I have to register and pay fee by?
Owners of domestic wastewater treatment systems have until 01/02/2013 to register and pay fee.

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