When a mix of water and water-carried substances is released from a business, house, or other source, this is considered a wastewater discharge. Some industrial disposal of wastewater into Calgary's sewer system requires a wastewater permit.

Below, you will find details about which permit and requests you need based on the type of water being discharged.

All wastewater must comply with the limits listed in Schedules 'A', 'B', and 'C' of the Wastewater Bylaw.

Clear water waste disposal to wastewater system

Disposal of clear water waste into Calgary's wastewater system, including a manhole or monitoring access point, is prohibited without prior approval from the Director of Water Resources or Water Services.

If you are disposing of water from sources other than wastewater streams, including the following:

  • Roof and foundation
  • Remediated groundwater
  • Accumulated storm drainage or groundwater
  • Non-contact cooling water
  • A disposal as directed by Alberta Environment

Use the Nuisance Water Disposal Flowchart to determine if you require disposal into the wastewater system.

If your project qualifies you for wastewater system disposal, first determine if it is foundation drainage connected to The City's wastewater system before 1973.

If not, you may need to apply for a Clear Water Waste Disposal Permit.

All wastewater must comply with substances listed in Schedules A, B, and C of the Wastewater Bylaw.

Application checklist:

  • Have you completed the Clear Water Waste Disposal Permit Application form in full?
  • Have you included the justification to dispose to the wastewater system using the Nuisance Water Disposal Flowchart?
  • Have you included a description of the project?
  • Have you included a description of the pre-treatment system?
  • If you wish to discharge at a rate greater than 150L/min, have you included the proposed rate?
  • Have you included water quality results? (Water quality results must be reported using the Analytical Results Reporting Form.)
  • If water quality results cannot be obtained at this time, have you included justification as to why they are being deferred, and when they will be available? 

Please contact 311 if you have further questions/concerns. Let the operator know you are looking for information regarding the Industrial Monitoring Group's Clear Water Waste Disposal Program.

If you are collecting, treating and disposing wastewater in a privately-owned system, such as a septic tank with an absorption field, a private wastewater system application is required.

Pool Water Discharges

Anyone using a pump, or a siphon with an inside diameter greater than 1.5 inches, to drain a pool greater than 3000 Litres to the Wastewater System, must notify The City of Calgary’s Industrial Monitoring Group (IMG). Please fill out the pool drain request form.  

If the discharge rate can be maintained under 150 L/min, IMG will process your request within five business days. If the proposed discharge rate exceeds 150 L/min, IMG requires a minimum of ten business days, in order to assess the reported water quality and liaise with both the Development Planning Department, and the receiving Wastewater Treatment Plant. If sufficient notice is not provided, the proposed discharge may have to be delayed.

RV wastewater disposal

There are 3 locations in Calgary accepting domestic waste from RVs:

Grey Water and Wastewater from special events

During any special events, grey water from portable handwashing station and porta potties wastewater can be disposed of at the following locations: 

Wastewater or grey water generated by preparing food or rinsing and washing equipment used to process or cook food must be collected for disposal by a company holding a valid permit to access the FOG receiving station at the Bonnybrook Wastewater Treatment Plant.

If the special event is set up for several days and permission was received from The City to discharge grey water directly into the wastewater system, the grey water from food preparation must go through a FOG interceptor to remove fats, oil and grease before entering into the wastewater system.

For more information on setting up your special event, please visit Book and plan your event (calgary.ca)

Licensing for cleaning buildings and vehicles with a mobile cleaning machine

This activity requires a Cleaning Service License, which can be obtained from the City of Calgary Business Licensing.

Other related permits

Stormwater drainage permits and notifications

Within the city of Calgary, approval is required to directly or indirectly release water into the storm drainage system (including roadways and swales). This includes any pumping activity, or the commercial snow melting blanket drainage permit.

Find out if you need a permit or notification by visiting the stormwater drainage permits page for information on how to apply.

Wastewater Hauling Permits

If you are transporting loads of wastewater, septage or FOG (fats, oils, grease) to a designated City site for disposal to the wastewater system. Apply for a Commercial Hauled Wastewater Permit.