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Erosion and Sediment Control

Program Overview

The mission of the Erosion and Sediment Control (E&SC) Program is to allow development within our state while preventing pollution by sedimentation.

In cooperation with the Sedimentation Control Commission and pursuant to the Sedimentation Pollution Control Act of 1973, the Erosion and Sediment Control Program:

Why is it important to prevent erosion and sedimentation?

Erosion is the detachment and movement of soil particles by water, wind, and ice. Sedimentation is the process by which eroded soil is deposited into water bodies or onto land surfaces. Natural erosion occurs primarily on a geologic time scale, but when human activities alter the landscape, the erosion process can be greatly accelerated. Each year thousands of acres of land in NC are exposed during the course of construction and development. Without protective practices, the land is left vulnerable to the ravages of wind and rain. The four types of soil erosion on exposed terrain: splash, sheet, rill/gully, and stream/channel erosion strip the land of the nutrient-rich topsoil, causing soil degradation such as decreased soil productivity and increased loss of soil structure. Sediment that erodes from these exposed areas accumulates in lakes, natural watercourses, and adjoining properties. When sediment travels off-site with runoff into water bodies it can accumulate on the bottom, harm aquatic life, increase turbidity and restrict the amount of sunlight reaching aquatic plants. Sediment can also decrease the storage volume of water bodies and can clog sewer storm drains which can increase the potential of flooding. Sediment in our water also increases the costs of power production and of treating municipal drinking water.

Best Management Practices (BMPs) can be used to control erosion and prevent off-site sedimentation, thus reducing water pollution due to sedimentation.

Related Information

To stay up to date with E&SC information in NC there are two available listservs:

  • Listserv run by E&SC Program staff for those interested in being notified regarding rule amendments, rule proposals, public hearings, and public comment periods. To subscribe use the Denr.dlr.erosion.sediment.interested.parties listserv site. 
  • Sediments Listserv run by the Water Resources Research Institute (WRRI) of the UNC System. This listserv is used to advertise E&SC training information, the Sediments newsletter and share other related information. To subscribe follow the Sediments listserv directions on the WRRI Listservs page.


Information on the 2019 E&SC workshops will be posted here as it becomes available. 

2018 E&SC Design Workshop

December 4, 2018
Jane S. McKimmon Center
Raleigh, NC

Presented by: N.C. DEQ – Land Quality Section
In partnership with: Southeast Chapter – International Erosion Control Association (SE-IECA) and NCSU Department of Crop & Soil Science.

Workshop Presentations:

If you attended the workshop and have any other feedback you would like to submit, email the Sediment Education Specialist

Contact Information

If you have questions or concerns related to erosion and sediment control or off-site sedimentation in NC, contact: