Local Government is responsible for the management of around 15,000km of roads in the NT. Poor road management can have negative impacts such as the erosion of soil. Erosion is the wearing away of the land surface by water, wind and ice. Erosion is a natural process, but it can be accelerated through changes in land use, vegetative cover and drainage patterns. The main components of soil erosion are water, wind and gravity; with water being the most significant cause. Damage from soil erosion worldwide is estimated to be $400 billion per year.
Improved roads management will help to reduce soil erosion, help protect the natural environment and reduce overall maintenance and disaster repair costs associated with road washouts and disrepair.
It is important for councils to:
- understand the erosion process
- recognise types of soil erosion
- understand the impacts of erosion on the environment
- assess erosion problems and identify their causes
- understand and be aware of best-practice land management
Although erosion occurs naturally in the environment, this process is accelerated through a disturbance to the soil or vegetation, particularly during:
- grading new roads, tracks and fence lines
- pipe line location and construction
- removing vegetation
- off road driving
- impacts from animals (cattle pads, overgrazing, feral animals)
- impacts of fire (leaving soils exposed to wind and water)
LGANT supports responsible land use practices which minimise accelerated erosion processes. For more information go to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources website at