Production processes in the textile, apparel, leather and footwear industries often use large quantities of both chemicals and water. If the output (e.g. discharged wastewater and sludge) is not properly treated, the resulting effluent can present a threat to people and the environment.

The Output Focus Area supports and verifies the work of the Input and Process Focus Areas. It incorporates the development and ongoing maintenance of the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines and related implementation tools, which are the ZDHC Gateway - Wastewater Module and ZDHC ClearStream reports.

ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines Version 1.1

Together with leading brands, suppliers, academia, testing laboratories, technology providers, and other stakeholders, we created the most comprehensive and unified guidelines for wet processing facilities. The ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines define a single, unified standard for wastewater testing that goes beyond regulatory compliance and conventional wastewater testing parameters. These are the first Guidelines to define pass and fail criteria for hazardous chemicals covered in the ZDHC MRSL (ZDHC Manufacturing Restricted Substances List).

Download Version 1.0 here (released in November 2016).

Download Version 1.1 here (released in July 2019).


ZDHC Wastewater and Sludge Laboratory Sampling and Analysis Plan (SAP) Version 1.1

This document is one of the key elements to support the implementation of the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines through standardising procedures for laboratories to conduct sampling and analysis.

We encourage all ZDHC Accepted Laboratories to refer to both the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines and the SAP Version 1.1 when conducting sampling and analysis, as both documents are complementing one another.

Download the SAP Version 1.1 here.

ZDHC Gateway Electronic Data Reporting System (EDR) Version 1.0

Data integrity on ZDHC Gateway - Wastewater Module is a cornerstone of the ZDHC Roadmap to Zero Programme. To ensure this is properly maintained, ZDHC has issued the ZDHC Gateway Electronic Data Reporting System Guideline, for which the ZDHC Accepted Laboratories are expected to adhere to.

This Guideline explains the automated system to allow the Accepted Laboratories to report the wastewater and sludge testing data onto the ZDHC Gateway in a resource effective manner. This system is also backed by a data validation mechanism to ensure data uploaded onto the Wastewater Module is consistent and conformant to the data rules. The Guidelines highlight the expectations, criteria and specification of the data uploaded electronically onto the ZDHC Gateway. The ZDHC Gateway Electronic Data Reporting System is currently being developed and will be rolled out in 2020 (exact time to be determined).

Download Version 1.0 here (released August 2019).



ZDHC Gateway Laboratory Acceptance Programme - Wastewater Guidelines

In order to support the implementation of the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines in the value chain and to ensure a consistent level of quality for the wastewater and sludge test data submitted in the ZDHC Wastewater - Gateway Module, ZDHC provides this programme.

If you are interested in becoming one of the ZDHC Accepted Laboratories please submit your application through completing the online form below. In this form, you can find information on the minimum acceptance criteria, application and review process, fee structure and other details. Please pick the one suitable to your case. 

Any questions please contact

Download the current list of ZDHC Provisionally Accepted Laboratories here 

ZDHC Wastewater Treatment Technologies Document

Wastewater treatment is a complex process, and ZDHC hopes that in combination with regional training programmes and other relevant references, this technical overview of wastewater treatment technologies will help the supply chain to close the knowledge gap and to meet the requirements of the ZDHC Wastewater Guidelines.

Download the ZDHC Wastewater Treatment Technologies Document here.

Related Documents & Tools

  • Wastewater Guidance Literature Review