Erosion and sediment control

Land disturbance associated with the construction, installation and/or maintenance of buildings, roads, sewerage or other infrastructure creates the potential for increased soil erosion and consequent sediment pollution of waterways. Reducing these impacts requires awareness and a coordinated approach.

Sediment runoff can destroy aquatic habitats, degrade water quality, reduce the capacity of stormwater infrastructure, contribute to flooding and increase maintenance costs. It's very important for developers, builders and home renovators to know their responsibilities when it comes to proper erosion and sediment control measures.

Good erosion and sediment control involves careful management of the site before, during and after construction, using a combination of control measures. These controls help to minimise site disturbance and trap sediment before it can wash away. They can also prevent the loss of stockpiles and improve building site conditions generally.

Benefits of erosion prevention

  • Improved on-site drainage and improved working conditions, especially in wet weather
  • Better site presentation to the public
  • Improved water quality and visual amenity of our waterways
  • Reduced impact on aquatic and marine ecosystems and improved waterway health
  • Improved environment for surfing, fishing, boating and other recreational activities
  • Less sedimentation of our waterways and reduced dredging costs
  • Reduction in complaints, clean up costs and Council fines

Why do I need an erosion and sediment control plan?

  • You are legally obliged to install erosion and control measures on your site.
  • Council will often require you to submit an erosion and sediment control plan before work begins.
  • If activity on your site causes a pollution incident, you could receive finesfor each incident
  • Save money and downtime by having an organised site and preventing costly building supplies from being washed away during wet weather.
  • Reduce hazards and improve the health and safety for your workers and the community.
  • We all have a role to play in making our waterways clean and safe for everyone to enjoy.

How to get your work site right

If you’re building or renovating, here are a few ways you can help prevent sediment runoff from leaving your site and polluting our waterways:

  • Leave as much vegetation on the site and street verge as possible during construction.
  • Establish a single, stabilised entry and exit point to prevent tracking sediment off the site.
  • Install sediment fencing correctly along the low side of the site, using geotextile material.
  • Divert stormwater around the work site.
  • Connect downpipes from the guttering to the stormwater drain as soon as the roof is installed.
  • Cover stockpiles from rain and wind.
  • Sweep the footpath and road every day and never hose sediment into the gutter or stormwater drain