Vegetation and safety near transmission lines
Integrated vegetation management is a systematic integrated approach to managing vegetation. It applies the right intervention method at the right place and the right time to control vegetation. The activities are integrated because they are all closely linked. In fact, the information recorded at each phase impacts the decisions for the entire process. This integration enables us to make better choices and continuously improve our integrated vegetation management approach.
Hydro-Québec's goal is not to eliminate all of the vegetation but rather only the plants that are incompatible with system reliability. Controlling the vegetation growing in the rights-of-way means planting and maintaining herbaceous plants and shrubs.
The employees that oversee vegetation management include forest industry professionals (forest engineers and technicians, biologists, etc.) and skilled specialized forestry workers hired by the industry's leading companies. Each person has received training in industry techniques and environmental studies.
At this first step, we determine the order in which the interventions will take place during the year based on the regrowth cycles of each right-of-way.
On average, work is carried out every five years. The intervention cycles vary according to local growth conditions and the approach that is selected. The farther north a line is located, the less frequent the clearing operations, since vegetation tends to grow at a slower rate in harsher climates.
The vegetation in the rights-of-way is mainly analyzed from aerial photographs and/or field inspections while the work is being done. The list of sensitive elements is updated to ensure that the health and safety risks for the public, the workers and the environment are taken into account.
Hydro-Québec uses the right method at the right place and the right time.
The choice of method is based on several factors. More information on these factors
Whenever possible, Hydro-Québec will contact:
At least two weeks before the work is set to start, Hydro-Québec will give notice to:
When herbicides are spread in rights-of-way, Hydro-Québec will release the following documents under the Pesticide Use Code of the Pesticides Act:
For Hydro-Québec, the vegetation management period starts after the snow melts and continues as long as the weather permits or until the snow makes work impossible.
Vegetation management work is carried out by skilled workers hired by independent companies that are certified by Hydro-Québec.
For example, silviculture skills (ex. brush and tree cutting) are an asset for workers who carry out mechanical cutting. Employees who apply herbicides must be certified under the Pesticides Act and the Environment Quality Act.
Hydro-Québec oversees the work carried out by the companies and follows up to ensure that quality standards and objectives have been met.
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