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The harmful effects of runoff from worksites can be devastating for the environment. Development projects, combined with rain and wind, cause soil to be detached, translocated and deposited into creeks, riverbeds, lakes, ditches, or any number of other sites. This can disturb ecosystems, harm local wildlife, and further damage the area. Thankfully, there are effective methods to prevent sediment runoff from devastating the environment. One such method is installing a sediment basin.


What are sediment basins?

Sediment basins, also called silt basins, are one of the most effective ways to stop harmful runoff from worksites in Alabama. Their design and function is simple. Sediment basins are essentially small, temporary ponds that are built on construction sites to capture the sediment rich runoff caused by heavy rain and erosion. By catching this runoff in the temporary pond, the basins allow sediment to stratify and settle on the bottom of the pond. Without a sediment basin, the sediment rich runoff could continue to flow downhill and be deposited in harmful places. 


Why do sediment basins work?

The main reason that installing a sediment basin works is because they are very effective at slowing the velocity of downhill-flowing water runoff. When the runoff is flowing at a high velocity, the sediment contained in the runoff is unable to settle and will continue to flow with the water. This water will either settle in lower elevation areas or flow into local stream channels, bringing the sediment with it and harming the ecosystem. 


Because sediment basins slow the flow of water runoff so effectively, the sediment contained in the water is able to settle at the bottom of the temporary pond. Cleaner water at the top of the pond is eventually released from the basin, but the sediment remains trapped there, effectively controlling the erosion.


How are sediment basins removed?

After construction is finished, sediment basins can either be removed or converted into permanent stormwater basins. For a sediment basin to return to grade, it has to be filled with additional soil and stabilized using vegetation to meet housing and environmental codes. For a sediment basin to be converted into a permanent stormwater basin, it will require additional construction and a potential redesign to meet housing and environmental codes.


If you are looking to limit the environmental damage caused by heavy rain and erosion at work sites, installing a sediment basin could be the perfect solution for you. Sediment basin installation from Burns Environmental is a great way to ensure erosion control and a “zero harm” worksite. Burns Environmental is experienced, trustworthy, and readily equipped to meet all your erosion control needs.

Contact Burns Environmental today for a FREE quote on sediment basin installation today!

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