Soil erosion is a priority for any contractor and can impact the surrounding area long-term. See how you can protect your construction site with these soil erosion protection methods.
What Is Soil Erosion?
Soil erosion is a natural process in which the topsoil of a landscape is loosened and worn away over time. Erosion is a three-step process:
- Detachment from the ground
- Soil transportation
- Soil deposition
Any property is at risk for soil erosion, despite its size, and the effects can be long-lasting. Significant consequences of erosion include:
The loss of the upper layer of topsoil eliminates most of the soil’s natural ability to provide nutrients for landscape growth.
Erosion causes excess sediment to runoff into local water supplies. The extra nutrients in sediment impact water quality that can create health problems for area populations.
Sediment buildup caused by erosion can lead to lower flow capacities in rivers and streams. This buildup increases the likelihood of flooding in low-lying areas.
What Are the Causes of Soil Erosion?
As stated earlier, soil erosion is a natural process, and various factors can influence it. Some of the common causes of soil erosion include:
Excessive rain within a brief period can fragment soil aggregates. Rainwater breaks open the soil and pools beneath the weakened topsoil, washing it away. Land that doesn’t have flowers or vegetation can be especially vulnerable to rain.
If you have seen any photos chronicling the Dust Bowl from the 1930s, you have seen the effects of high winds on soil erosion. Soils that are loose and dry can be displaced and carried by light winds, and very high winds can transport mass amounts of soil particles, damaging the landscape and impacting soil fertility.
Grass, plants, and even weeds help keep soil in place. Removing large amounts of turf can leave your soil exposed and increase the likelihood of erosion.
Soil Erosion in New Construction
Erosion is one of the most significant issues that contractors consider before beginning a new construction project. Activities such as grading and filling can reduce soil quality. If not correctly addressed, low soil qualities can harm the surrounding environment. Protecting the land will help keep the soil healthy and allow you to maximize the full potential of the area. But what can be done to reduce erosion at construction sites? Consider these four effective soil erosion protection methods when preparing to start a new construction project.
Ready to protect your construction site from soil erosion? Contact Varsity Inc. and see how our professionals can help you today!
The Four Types of Erosion Management
The best technique to fight against soil erosion at a construction site is to practice proper erosion control methods. Taking simple precautions can help prevent erosion and keep your landscape healthy. Here are four types of erosion management that reduce erosive damage at job sites:
Mulch is considered any material that is spread over topsoil to act as a ground cover. Mulch guards against surface runoff and protects from high winds by mimicking the natural environment found in forests and is an effective technique in managing erosion. There are two types of mulch offered for erosion management:
Organic mulch is manufactured using grain straw, hay, tree leaves, wood shavings, and other crop residues. Organic mulch keeps the soil cooler, helps retain moisture levels, and provides nutrients to the soil by decomposing slowly over time.
Inorganic mulch is made of gravel, stone chips, river rock, and rubber and is a more durable product than organic mulch. Inorganic mulch protects against erosion by moderating soil temperature and increasing water infiltration.
Erosion Control Blankets
Erosion control blankets are biodegradable layers that provide temporary protection for the soil by allowing vegetation to establish roots. They feature an open weave design covering bare soil areas from exposure and allowing new plants to breathe. Construction companies use erosion control blankets in large development areas that include slopes and water edges. Erosion control blankets are increasing in popularity because they are:
Erosion control blankets are made from natural materials. There’s no need to remove a blanket because it will eventually decompose and add additional nutrients and minerals to the soil.
Erosion control blankets are a cost-effective soil erosion solution. They feature a simple design, and their simple installation saves you time.
Erosion control blankets are temporary protective layers and offer easy relocation around your job site.
Wattles are long tubes constructed of straw and reduce erosion by preventing sediment from streaming into local waterways. Wattles improve stormwater runoff and are an effective alternative to silt fences. They work by stabilizing construction disturbances and reducing water flow velocities by shortening slope lengths. Wattles are easy to install and are an efficient erosion control method because they:
- Keep the soil healthy
- Protect the environment
- Limit water pollution
Tackifiers are adhesives that reduce erosion by sticking various items to the surface. Construction sites often use tackifiers to protect bare areas that are not in use from wind, rainfall, and snowmelt. Tackifiers are created by combining seed, mulch, and other soil amendments with water and mixing them to form a thick slurry substance. The substance is then applied to the soil using a hydroseeder.
Streamline Your Erosion Control Services by Using Varsity Inc.
Varsity Inc. understands how detrimental soil erosion can be to a construction project. That’s why we offer cost-effective soil erosion protection methods that protect your site. Our solutions follow all EPA regulations, and we have developed a reputation for providing quality work at competitive prices. Contact Varsity Inc. today and see how we can help with your soil erosion concerns.
1204 Main Street
Swoyersville, PA 18704
Dushore, PA 18648