Applying for Environmental Permits & Licences

To operate businesses in Hong Kong, you will need to observe the environmental protection ordinances and apply for permits and licences as required. Here you can learn about the legislation that has been enacted to protect the environment, whether your business needs an environmental permit or licence, and how to apply for permits or licences.

Environmental Protection Legislation

Before determining whether you need to apply for an environmental permit or licence, you should be aware of the legal framework for environmental protection in Hong Kong. At present, the following pieces of legislation are related to environmental protection and the control of pollution:

  • Air Pollution Control Ordinance
  • Ozone Layer Protection Ordinance
  • Water Pollution Control Ordinance
  • Waste Disposal Ordinance
  • Dumping at Sea Ordinance
  • Noise Control Ordinance
  • Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance
  • Hazardous Chemicals Control Ordinance
  • Product Eco-responsibility Ordinance

Each of these ordinances sets out requirements for permits or licences if you or your company intends to be involved in any of the controlled activities.

More on the environmental laws and regulations

Do I Need a Permit or Licence for My Business Activity?

If your business or premises is involved in any of the following activities, you may need to apply for an environmental licence or permit:

  • Specified polluting processes
  • Installation or alteration of furnaces, ovens and chimneys
  • Open burning
  • Asbestos-related activities
  • Construction work
  • Production, sale, rental or use of an air compressor
  • Production, sale, rental or use of a handheld percussive breaker
  • Discharge of trade effluent 
  • Production, collection or disposal of chemical waste
  • Collection or disposal of clinical waste 
  • Import or export of waste
  • Use or sale of oil dispersants or similar substances for treating oil at sea in Hong Kong
  • Marine dumping activities
  • Import, export, manufacture or use of non-pesticide hazardous chemicals
  • Distribute of regulated electrical equipment
  • Store, treat, reprocess or recycle e-waste

If you are still unsure whether you need a licence, you can contact the Environmental Protection Department's Customer Service Centre at 2838 3111.

Who should apply for environmental permits and licences

A Guide to the Registration of Chemical Waste Producers

Permit and Licence Applications

Online application is available for permits and licences in the following areas:

  • Air pollution control
  • Waste disposal
  • Water pollution control
  • Noise control
  • Environmental impact assessment

You can also download application forms and guidance notes for permits and licences in the following areas:

  • Air pollution control  
  • Environmental impact assessment
  • Dumping at sea  
  • Noise control  
  • Waste disposal  
  • Water pollution control
  • Hazardous chemicals control
  • Product eco-responsibility

Applying for Environmental Permits and Licences

Application forms and online application serviceMore on application fees and charges for licences and permits
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Last review date: December 2019