How to Reduce Erosion at Construction Sites


Erosion is the physical reduction of soil caused by the impact of wind and water. Although erosion is naturally occurring, it can be accelerated by the actions of humans, including construction, which often results in the removal or destruction of natural erosion-control mechanisms. Many governmental authorities have passed regulations to reduce the impact of erosion at construction sites.


  • Many materials used at construction sites can be washed away with the natural sediment as it erodes. These include oil, grease and chemicals.


  • Erosion can be reduced at construction sites by using methods that limit the surface disturbance of the area under construction. This leaves the maximum amount of vegetation in place.

Mass Grading

  • "Mass grading" is an effective technique to reduce erosion at construction sites. This grading method makes the project conform to the naturally occurring terrain, rather than bulldozing the site to a level or flat surface.


  • Some construction companies use compost to control erosion at construction sites. Organic material helps absorb water, reduce runoff and keep the soil in place.

Slope Drains

  • A slope drain can be constructed from the top to the bottom of a slope and be used to bring a large amount of water from a higher area to a lower one. The drain can be made of metal or plastic.

Subsurface Drainage

  • A perforated pipe or conduit can be placed underneath the ground to catch and convey water. This prevents an area from becoming soaked.

Other Methods

  • A diversion structure, or berm, can be built to divert water around an area that is susceptible to excessive watering. A retention pond, or temporary water storage pit, can be built to hold water so it can be released in a controlled manner.

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  • Photo Credit Image by, courtesy of Terinea IT Support
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