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What is an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan (ESCP) & when is one required?

An Erosion and Sediment Control Plan (ESCP) is a vital part of the process throughout most construction works - as it usually involves soil disturbance, exposure and heavy vehicle movements. The purpose of the plan is to provide methods which prevent sediments from entering into the surrounding environment and causing significant damage, and to ensure Stormwater infrastructure is not blocked and damaged.

The Erosion and Sediment Control Plan itself, is a document prepared by a suitably qualified professional which determines the most suitable location for control measures to be positioned. These locations are determined after analysing the gradient of the site, catchment area, estimated rainfall and the anticipated direction of runoff. Prevention methods include:

  • Suitable location of stockpiles

  • Drainage protection

  • Erosion control (protecting & stabilizing exposed soils)

  • Sediment Control (sediment fence, diversion bund etc.)

  • Stabilised entry/ exit point

In Queensland, an ESCP is needed under the State Planning Policy and the Planning Act 2016 unless it meets exemptions expressed in these statutory plans and policies or otherwise deemed unnecessary by the public and/or governments.

This applies for all land and infrastructure developments: residential, commercial, industrial and land-related public infrastructure (such as subdivisions, roads, rail…). If an ESCP is not obtained when needed, those accountable can be legally prosecuted. The risk of depositing unwanted contaminants in nearby waterways during construction can cause permanent environmental harm. Hence, the ESCP is not just a local or state requirement but also a national requirement under the Environmental Protection Act 1994.

If you require an ESCP or have any questions surrounding the requirements, contact our team at

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