Once waters receded following the March 2019 floods, many Nebraskans found sand and sediment deposited on their fields and properties. The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality issued options that Landowners can consider for sand removal.

Can it be pushed back into the river?

Potentially, sand can be pushed back into the river. Those who want to, however, need to apply for – and receive – a permit from the United States Army Corps of Engineers. The permit is called RGP-11-02-WEH.

To apply for the permit, a landowner can call (402) 896-0896, or find the application online.  The permit may have conditions that are location-specific, including:

  • The amount of sand that can be pushed to the river per day
  • If sand can only be pushed into flowing water
  • Endangered species restrictions
  • If the sediment must return to the stream it came from
  • The time of year
  • Restrictions on pushing trees, large debris, fencing, white goods and/or trash into the stream.

Other options?

 Farmers and landowners may be able to work the sand into their soil.  If there is too much, there are several issues that should be considered :

Sand Disposal

Sand that is contaminated with fecal matter, oil, or other chemical products should be disposed of in a municipal solid waste landfill, according to DEQ.  Uncontaminated sand can also be disposed of in a municipal solid waste landfill or in a construction and demolition landfill.  NDEQ maintains lists of these types of landfills on its website at: http://deq.ne.gov/NDEQProg.nsf/FacilityListView.xsp.  Contact the facility nearest you for disposal costs or other requirements.

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