Tag Archives: Erosion and Sedimentation Control

How Erosion And Sediment Control Plan Affects The Building

This entry is part of 1 in the series Erosion and Sediment Control Plan (ESCP)


Sediment control helps builders prevent soil, sand, and cement from reaching waterways. Even small amounts of erosion or pollution from the site can bring significant environmental damage or kill aquatic life. The pollution can block stormwater pipes. Ensure that all control plans are done in accordance with the mandatory requirements of the Planning and Permit department.

How an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan Affects Buildings

The erosion plan’s aim is to divert uncontaminated water far from the work area. The efforts help minimize erosion by reducing site disturbance or destabilization of surfaces. The control plans also prevent the collection of material stockpiles or discharging of sediments.

Successful control measures on the building site can retain and trap sediment displaced by slope erosion. This can result in improved site conditions and reduction of cleanup costs to the community. The local community experience healthier aquatic life and cleaner waterways.

Erosion and sediments can delay constructions because of wet conditions. This can result in losses arising from material stockpiles. With the erosion control plans, you get fewer dust and mud problems. Therefore, there are fewer chances of fines because of the reduction in the number of the public complains.

Make certain that all attempts to comply with the sediment control plans are in line with the requirements of sediment control or local erosion guidelines. You should obtain appropriate experts with the right qualification and certification to handle your erosion and sediment control plans.

Factors Influencing Sediment Control

Slope – the longer and steeper the slope, the greater it is to suffer sedimentation and erosion.

Soil type – clay soil has a higher chance of bringing environmental harm. Sandy soils can cause traffic hazards and drainage problems. Exposed subsoil can bring more problems than topsoil.

Nature, extent, and duration of the disturbance – the greater the disturbance, the higher the risk of sedimentation or erosion.

Season ad climate – high rainfall intensity and duration together with high winds can affect sedimentation and erosion. Rainfall events intensify under climate change. The extent and severity of the sedimentation and erosion increases. This increases the need to control the impacts which are of great importance.

Locations and size of the site – it is harder to implement sediment control on the smaller sites. It is more problematic if the site slopes towards the road. You can contact your local council for consultation. Large rural sites that have vegetation do not always need specific controls.

How to Minimize Site Disturbance

Prevention or control is always better than cure.  Put in place a careful design and an efficient construction sequence that will minimize disturbance to your site. This will reduce environmental impact and save you money.  The design should avoid excessive cuts and unnecessary clearing of vegetation. Clear only areas where the building work will take place. Preserve grass and vegetation as much as possible to help filter erosion and sediments from stormwater before it reaches your drainage system.

Postpone removal of vegetation or starting earthworks until you are ready to start the building activities. Avoid construction activities that disturb the soil during rainy seasons or lengthy and heavy rainfall periods.

How to Implement Sediment Control Plans

Start installing erosion and sediment control plans before you start any earth moving or excavation. Regularly maintain the control plans until the building construction is complete and the site stabilizes.  It is important to ensure you do not unlawfully divert stormwater or release it into the neighboring properties as it can cause erosion or discharge points, which can result in lawsuits.

Avoid contaminating the stormwater with sediments by diverting the water away from the construction area. Use flow diversion devices to minimize the volume of stormwater reaching that disturbed area. Restrict overland flow by installing storm water drainage system early during the construction process.

For more information, contact us.


Tips to Help You Develop Your Erosion and Sediment Control Plan

This entry is part 2 of 4 in the series Erosion & Sediment Control Plan (ESCP)

Recently the Department of Permitting and Planning developed new regulations requiring Erosion and Sediment Control Plan for people doing construction on their property. This includes people who want to:

  • Build a home
  • Create a home addition
  • Develop a [amazon_textlink asin=’0764318365′ text=’retaining wall’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’ownbuilddesig-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e1b689ee-a227-11e7-98fb-dfa05a704724′]
  • Grade their land
  • Install a driveway or sidewalk
  • Install an in ground pool

This is just a partial list of the jobs that must have an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan. If you plan to do any type of work that “disrupts” the land in any way, you must submit the appropriate paperwork. You may be aware of the regulations but be wondering how to go about tackling this task. We’ve developed tips to help you navigate the paperwork.

Determine what type of project you have

The Department of Permitting and Planning separates projects into either category 1A or category 1B. Each category has slightly different paperwork. Here are the main differences between 1A and 1B.

Category 1A:

  • Non-commercial construction job that disturbs less than 1,000 square feet of land.
  • The slope of construction cannot be more than 15 %.

Category 1B:

  • Residential construction more than 1,000 square feet but not more than an acre.
  • Residential construction that is less than 1,000 square feet but has a slope of more than 15%.
  • Construction is for a commercial building under one acre.

To determine what category your construction falls within, you will need to measure the land you will disrupt and determine the slope (more information about how to do that in upcoming posts).

Develop a schedule

As part of the Erosion and Sediment Control Plan, you will need to submit a schedule detailing how long each step will take. In other words, you need to break the entire project down into smaller steps and estimate the amount of time it will take you to complete that task. A simple table with a column for the task and another for the time to complete will suffice.

Secure your checklist template

Download a checklist template for category 1A here or for category 1B here. It gives suggestions for minimizing the negative effects of disrupting the land. The checklist contains several categories with a list of potential solutions you can use for each one. For example, one category is titled, “Dust Control.” One of the suggested options to reduce the dust include: “Mulching to a one inch or more depth.” Once you have the checklist, use it as a guide to what precautionary measures to take.

Diagram the site

You also need to submit a diagram or map of the construction site. Using grid paper, sketch the construction site. Make sure your map shows the boundary surrounding the property as well as any other buildings on location. Storm drains must be included too. Use a wavy line with an arrow at the end in order to show which way the water flows. Finally, include the best management practices you will use such as a silt fence, vegetation, gravel, and so on. Display the best management practices (BMPs) with appropriate symbols.

Prepare to submit your control plan

Once you have all your documents ready, you may send them in with a $250 payment. This amount will cover one plan review. If you need multiple permits all related to the same job, you may submit it all as one so you don’t have to pay additional fees.

This mandatory paperwork may seem overwhelming at first, but we are here to help guide you through the process. Keep an eye open for our future posts. We will be posting about how to measure the slope of your property and more. Contact Owner Built Design, LLC for more information today!


Do I Need an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan?

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series Erosion & Sediment Control Plan (ESCP)

If you plan to do construction on your property such as building a home or other structure, it’s important to understand the new regulations set forth by the Department of Permitting and Planning. These regulations pertain to the erosion and sedimentation of your property and the property surrounding it. Here are the details of what is expected of you as the homeowner.

Who needs an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan

For any type of construction work that will disturb the land, you must submit an Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plan. The following are examples of the type of work that falls into that category:

  • [amazon_textlink asin=’1600857647′ text=’Pouring a foundation’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’ownbuilddesig-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e1824e8c-9efc-11e7-8540-ffe64dc8266c’]
  • [amazon_textlink asin=’0764318365′ text=’Constructing a retaining wall’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’ownbuilddesig-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7cd0dfce-9efc-11e7-94b9-81b74574ea85′]
  • Creating a driveway
  • Installing a sidewalk
  • Demolition work
  • Installing utilities
  • Trenching
  • Grading the land

This is only a partial list.

What is an Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plan (ESCP)

In simplest terms, the ESCP is a document that explains how you plan to prevent or reduce erosion during the construction process and “minimize the impacts of sediment, turbidity, and hydrologic changes off-site.” In other words, how will you ensure your construction project will not harm the environment, lands, or waters off-site? You may be wondering who is responsible for this documentation. The answer is the homeowner is.

Why is this necessary?

Any time the land is disturbed there is the risk that dirt, debris, and other waste will end up in the water sources. For example, when you dig a foundation for a home, it stirs and exposes soil. Then later when it rains or water is used during the project, the loose soil washes away from the site and ends up eventually in lakes, streams, and oceans. This wreaks havoc on our water. Protecting the oceans and streams from pollution is important for the community.

How long does my control plan have to be?

There is no set length for your ESCP but it must be thorough enough for the project you’re doing. If you are doing extensive construction and will be disturbing large quantities of soil, then your plan will be more extensive. If you are doing a relatively small amount of work, then the plan would likely more simple.

Category 1A and 1B control plans

Projects that involve disturbance of less than one acre of ground are put in a separate category as larger projects. The types of activities that fall within this category include:

Swimming pools

Retaining and CMU Walls

Foundation Repairs and Reconstruction

Sidewalk and Driveway Repairs and Reconstruction

House Demolition, Addition and New Residential Construction


The Department of Permitting and Planning categorized projects because different rules apply to projects that are not in 1A or 1B.

What do I need for my ESCP if I have a Category 1A or 1B project?

According to the rules set forth by the department, you will need the following components in your Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plan:

  • Checklist: The checklist must indicate that you have followed appropriate steps to ensure minimal erosion, sediment control, and best practices for managing the project. Templates are available to help you understand what is necessary.
  • Map of the site: This map will show some of the measures you’ll take to comply with the plan. For example, your map may include a silt fence that will be used to keep the soil contained.
  • Construction Schedule

The checklist is the more comprehensive piece you will complete. It outlines all of the necessary measures you will take to comply.

As you prepare to construct your next project, remember to begin with making your Erosion and Sediment Control Plan. We will be posting more information about this topic in the near future, so stay connected. For more immediate information, please contact us today!