IECA Canada | Ontario Ministry of Transportation Retains VOI Training Group for 3-year ESC Training Initiative
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Ontario Ministry of Transportation Retains VOI Training Group for 3-year ESC Training Initiative

An Emerald Member Case Study

Who: VOI Training Group and  Ontario Ministry of Transportation

When: May 2016 to October 2018

Where: Ontario Ministry of Transportation Regional Centers – Thunder Bay, North Bay, Kingston, Toronto and London


For many years, Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation’s (MTO) approach to erosion and sediment control during highway design and construction has focused primarily on the use of sediment control measures such as silt fences along watercourses. MTO’s erosion and sediment control program requirements are in the process of being updated for projects that involve earth disturbing activities. This new program includes more rigorous and defined processes and qualifications for design and construction.


MTO’s challenge is to educate its’ staff on the importance of effective and defensible erosion and sediment control practice and to promote a consistent approach to erosion and sediment control within the ministry and among its’ Service Providers.

Project Goal:

The primary objective of this project is to enhance MTO staff and Service Provider understanding of soil erosion and sedimentation processes and the fundamentals of effective erosion and sediment control practice facilitating a greater focus on erosion control at the source rather than solely on sediment control at receptors.


Prior to 2015, VOI Training Group had delivered 15 Erosion and Sediment Control Practitioner (ESCP™) Certificate training sessions throughout Ontario. The majority of course participants (approximately 200) were MTO staff. Remaining course participants represented consulting firms, construction contractors and regulatory agencies. In May 2015, an ESCP training session was delivered by VOI Training Group in Thunder Bay in support of MTO’s pilot of its’ updated erosion and sediment control program for a major highway upgrade project near the Town of Nipigon.

Based on overwhelming positive feedback from previous training sessions, and to provide consistent, defensible and relevant erosion and sediment control training, MTO retained VOI Training Group to deliver its’ ESCP training course to an additional 350 policy, engineering, operations, environmental and maintenance staff in head office and its’ 5 regions in 2016 and 2017. Additional training sessions will be scheduled in 2018 ensuring all identified MTO staff receive this erosion and sediment control training.

To support the ministry’s Service Providers, VOI Training Group scheduled additional ESCP training sessions in each MTO region in 2017 and 2018. This provides the opportunity for engineering, contract administration and environmental consultants, contractors and environmental regulators to receive and benefit from the same erosion and sediment control training MTO staff receive. Additional information on open-registration ESCP training sessions can be found at

VOI Training Group’s 3-day ESCP training provides one day of classroom instruction on the fundamentals of effective erosion and sediment control practice. The following two days are held in a field setting where course participant’s install numerous, commonly implemented erosion and sediment control practices to better understand their utility, benefits and limitations. Site assessment exercises help participants to identify the factors contributing to soil erosion and sediment transport and how these factors can be best managed during the construction process.


MTO staff have embraced the ESCP training. A very important outcome of the training is a better ministry-wide understanding of the impact of sediment on receptors and the importance of effective erosion and sediment control practice. The opportunity to install erosion and sediment control materials and practices bridges the gap between theory and practice that works. MTO staff and Service Providers are developing a common language and understanding of best practice for erosion and sediment control which aligns and supports MTO’s erosion and sediment control updating initiative.

More Information:

VOI Training Group is an Emerald Member of IECA’s Canadian Chapter.

VOI Training Group is Canada’s leading provider of applied erosion and sediment control and environmental training. Our courses are recognized by industry, regulators and professional associations.