Filter Strips

Other sector(s): 
The complete description of the NWRM: 

Filter strips are uniformly graded, gently sloping, vegetated strips of land that provide opportunities for slow conveyance and (commonly) infiltration. They are designed to accept runoff as overland sheet flow from upstream development and often lie between a hard-surfaced area and a receiving stream, surface water collection, treatment or disposal system.

Filter strips are generally planted with grass or other dense vegetation to treat the runoff through vegetative filtering, sedimentation, and (where appropriate) infiltration. They are often used as a pre-treatment technique before other sustainable drainage techniques (e.g. swales, infiltration and filter trenches). Filter strips are best suited to treating runoff from relatively small drainage areas such as roads and highways, roof downspouts, small car parks, and pervious surfaces.

Filter strips can serve as a buffer between incompatible land uses, and can provide locations for groundwater recharge in areas with pervious soils.  Filter strips are often integrated into the surrounding land use, for example public open space or road verges. Local wild grass and flower species can be introduced for visual interest and to provide a wildlife habitat.


Small filter strip in urban area

Source: Andras Kis’ presentation, NWRM Workshop 1

Filter strip in agriculture area


Possible benefits with level: 
Benefits Levelsort descending
ES9 - Filtration of pollutants High
BP9 - Intercept pollution pathways High
BP10 - Reduce erosion and/or sediment delivery High
ES6 - Groundwater/aquifer recharge Low
ES7 - Flood risk reduction Low
PO2 - Improving status of physico-chemical quality elements Low
PO4 - Improving chemical status and priority substances Low
PO9 - Take adequate and co-ordinated measures to reduce flood risks Low
PO12 - More sustainable agriculture and forestry Low
BP2 - Slow runoff Low
BP6 - Increase infiltration and/or groundwater recharge Low
ES3 - Natural biomass production Low
ES5 - Climate change adaptation and mitigation Low
BP7 - Increase soil water retention Low
BP16 - Reduce peak temperature Low
BP17 - Absorb and/or retain CO2 Low
ES4 - Biodiversity preservation Medium
ES8 - Erosion/sediment control Medium
ES11 - Aesthetic/cultural value Medium
PO7 - Prevent surface water status deterioration Medium
PO11 - Better protection for ecosystems and more use of Green Infrastructure Medium
PO14 - Prevention of biodiversity loss Medium
BP14 - Create terrestrial habitats Medium
Last updated: 09 Jun 2015 | Top