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J Environ Qual. 2009 Apr 27;38(3):1248-54. doi: 10.2134/jeq2008.0415. Print 2009 May-Jun.

Large-scale performance and design for construction activity erosion control best management practices.

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Filtrexx International, 551 East Lake Dr, Decatur, GA 30030, USA.


The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase II requires construction activities to have erosion and sediment control best management practices (BMPs) designed and installed for site storm water management. Although BMPs are specified on storm water pollution prevention plans (SWPPPs) as part of the construction general permit (GP), there is little evidence in the research literature as to how BMPs perform or should be designed. The objectives of this study were to: (i) comparatively evaluate the performance of common construction activity erosion control BMPs under a standardized test method, (ii) evaluate the performance of compost erosion control blanket thickness, (iii) evaluate the performance of compost erosion control blankets (CECBs) on a variety of slope angles, and (iv) determine Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) cover management factors (C factors) for these BMPs to assist site designers and engineers. Twenty-three erosion control BMPs were evaluated using American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) D-6459, standard test method for determination of ECB performance in protecting hill slopes from rainfall induced erosion, on 4:1 (H:V), 3:1, and 2:1 slopes. Soil loss reduction for treatments exposed to 5 cm of rainfall on a 2:1 slope ranged from-7 to 99%. For rainfall exposure of 10 cm, treatment soil loss reduction ranged from 8 to 99%. The 2.5 and 5 cm CECBs significantly reduced erosion on slopes up to 2:1, while CECBs < 2.5 cm are not recommended on slopes >or= 4:1 when rainfall totals reach 5 cm. Based on the soil loss results, USLE C factors ranged from 0.01 to 0.9. These performance and design criteria should aid site planners and designers in decision-making processes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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