What is sediment?
Sediment is material such as silt, sand, solvents and gravel that is washed or blown into storm drains and waterways.
Why control sediment?
When sediment reaches our waterways it can carry chemical pollutants, interrupt the flow of clean oxygenated water and cause fish deaths, algal blooms and other damage to rivers, lakes and the ocean.
Controlling sediment from building sites is a requirement of building approvals and enforceable under the Environmental Protection (Unauthorised Discharges) Regulations 2004, and Local laws.
How to put best practice sediment controls in place?
Practical ways to reduce erosion and control sediment and litter on land development and building sites
Follow these seven steps to reduce negative impacts on our waterways:
- Limit site disturbance by maintaining as much of the existing vegetation and soils as possible
- Set up vehicle access points away from storm drains
- Install a sediment control fence
- Stockpile sand within the site (and cover it to protect it from the wind and rain)
- Have a wash down zone well away from drains for mixing cement and cleaning tools
- Address building drainage early, including temporary drainage to reduce run off
- Dispose of paints and solvents at a licenced facility
For more detailed advice from Department of Parks and Wildlife and from Regional Councils, follow this link to our Sediment Control Tools & Resources page.
Sediment Control is a hot topic – see Master Builders on the Home in WA segment.