Natural Resources Wales

Winter weather, especially in Wales, can play havoc with developments as sites can become waterlogged very quickly.

22nd January 2015

The other problem with heavy rain is that soil can quickly be washed away from site losing valuable topsoil.

This soil can then end up in local rivers and streams which can ‘smother’ spawning grounds for fish like salmon and trout and kill the small insect they feed on.

Following a spate of incidents in west Wales, Jon Willington from Natural Resources Wales, offers this advice to developers and builders.

John said:

“We all know how changeable the weather can be and it can catch people out on building sites especially when they are being cleared. Simple precautions can help you keep soil on site and reduce the risk of it affecting local rivers.”

These include:

  • If you are clearing an area of land for development consider what controls you may need to prevent or minimise losing soil
  • Be proactive - consider producing a Water Management Plan for your site that identifies how soil could enter local rivers, streams or lakes

  • Each site is different - testing the soil on your site can help inform you as to the most appropriate way to prevent pollution e.g. the soil particle size should inform the choice of silt fencing

  • Consider employing expert advice to help you plan your development to avoid causing pollution

  • Consider producing a site emergency plan in case things go wrong. If things do go wrong and pollution occurs call Natural Resources Wales on 0800 807060 so we can work with you to minimise any impacts