GRI 306: Effluents and Waste 2016 sets out reporting requirements on the topic of effluents and waste. This Standard can be used by an organization of any size, type, sector or geographic location that wants to report on its impacts related to this topic.

*Please note*

Please note that the effluents-related content in the current GRI 306: Effluents and Waste 2016 Standard has been updated and can be found in GRI 303: Water and Effluents 2018. An organization reporting on GRI 306 for the first time is advised to use GRI 303: Water and Effluents 2018 to report on the topic of ‘effluents’.

Please also note that the Global Sustainability Standards Board (GSSB) has initiated a project to review and update the waste-related content in GRI 306: Effluents and Waste 2016. Please read more and sign up for updates on the project page for the review of GRI waste disclosures.


In the context of the GRI Standards, the environmental dimension of sustainability concerns an organization’s impacts on living and non-living natural systems, including land, air, water, and ecosystems.

GRI 306 addresses the topic of effluents and waste. This includes water discharges; the generation, treatment and disposal of waste; and spills of chemicals, oils, fuels, and other substances. 

The impacts of water discharges vary depending on the quantity, quality, and destination of the discharge. The unmanaged discharge of effluents with a high chemical or nutrient load (principally nitrogen, phosphorous, or potassium) can affect aquatic habitats, the quality of an available water supply, and an organization’s relationship with communities and other water users.

The generation, treatment and disposal of waste – including its improper transportation – can also pose harm to human health and the environment. This is of particular concern if waste is transported to countries lacking the infrastructure and regulations to handle it.

Spills of chemicals, oils, and fuels, among other substances, can potentially affect soil, water, air, biodiversity, and human health.

These concepts are covered by the Basel and Ramsar Conventions, and in key instruments of the International Maritime Organization: see the References section of this Standard.

The disclosures in this Standard can provide information about an organization’s impacts related to effluents and waste, and how it manages these impacts.

Effective date: 1 July 2018



GRI 306: Effluents and Waste

1. Management approach disclosures
2. Topic-specific disclosures

Disclosure 306-1 Water discharge by quality and destination
Disclosure 306-2 Waste by type and disposal method
Disclosure 306-3 Significant spills
Disclosure 306-4 Transport of hazardous waste
Disclosure 306-5 Water bodies affected by water discharges and/or runoff






Please see the GRI Standards translation page for available translations of the Standards, or to find out more about the upcoming translation schedule and how to get involved.

Related Standards

This Standard is to be used together with the most recent versions of the following documents.