Erosion and Sediment Control (ESC) is a critical component of an LID construction project. During construction, natural drainage pathways are altered, vegetation and stable topsoil aggregates are stripped away as part of the grading process. If left uncontrolled, erosion of exposed soils can cause local air quality problems, degradation of aquatic habitats, and damage to downstream recreational areas and infrastructure. ESC is often not properly designed, installed or maintained leaving the integrity of the site and downstream drainage areas at risk. While ESC is important to protect against many external site factors, it is also critical to protect against internal factors, particularly for a LID construction site. Improper ESC could lead to contamination of bioretention soils, clogged permeable pavers or sediment ridden clear stone beds and underdrains. An ESC plan will first identify all erosion and sediment sources, then identify the ESC protection practices you need to put in place, such as construction phasing, minimization of land disturbances, vegetative buffers, temporary seeding, sod stabilization, horizontal slope grading, preservation of trees and other natural vegetation, and temporary and permanent vegetation establishment. For these reasons, ESC is one of the aspects of an LID project that should receive careful attention.
To find out more about ESC, join CVC and TRCA on November 14th at the Pre-Latornell conference training Making It Work: Low Impact Development SWM Construction, Inspection, Maintenance, and Monitoring Module. Otherwise, check out CVC’s LID Construction Guide for helpful tips that can be found here:
and a video link illustrating the ESC process:
This blog entry was contributed by Jakub Wrobel and Julie McManus of the Credit Valley Conservation Authority