BMP 13.- Build retention structures across slopes to reduce the length of plots (fascines, vegetative buffers)

Artificial retention structures can be used to prevent and block pathways of concentrated run-off water, this reduces the erosion of soil and the translocation of sediments across sloping plots.

Artificial retention structure should be permeable to water and act to slow and disperse water flow to achieve the sedimentation of eroded particles.

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  • Management target
  • Sustainability Indicators


1.- Enhancement of Agro-biodiversity (enhance Habitats for birds; enhance soil fauna; increase fauna over the soil and edaphic fauna; enhance landscape diversity; provide ecosystem services such as pollination of crops, opportunities for recreation, …)

3.- Reduction of runoff and erosion

14.- Slowing down of water flow

15.- Retention of run-off water in field with slight slopes

16.- Redirecting of water flowing downhill

18.- Cutting off of pathways of concentrated run-off water allowing water permeability

19.- Protection of downstream areas by retaining and cleaning run-off water from sediments, nutrients, and PPP


7.- Improvement of water quality

10.- Avoidance of contamination (local and diffuse)

12.- Reduction of GHG levels

8.- SI – Satisfaction Index

The implementation of this BMP could have a positive influence on the farmer’s perception.

17.- Arable land use efficiency

There will be a change in the use of the soil in the surface used for the buffers.

18.- Biodiversity surface area

Buffers could be a refuge for some species in which survival can be difficult in arable lands.

19.- Ratio between natural vegetation surface and total surface of the farm

Buffers will increase this ratio by making larger the natural vegetation surface (if this kind of vegetation is the one used in the buffer).

21.- Biodiversity structure (nests, hives, spider webs, etc.)- habitats

As buffers act as refuges, there will be an increase of biodiversity structures.

23.- NO3 level – rivers

In the case of having vegetative buffers settled down across the slope to reduce plot’s length, this will aim to retain runoff water, and will also catch and filter NO3 levels, avoiding it to reach water streams.

25.- GHG level

Plants acting as buffers are a sink for GHG.