Herbicide Application and Brush Control
Southside Electric Cooperative began using herbicides to control brush within right-of-ways in 2008. Circuits are re-treated every four years to address any new trees that have begun to grow within the right-of-way. Selective herbicides and low-volume application methods are used to target saplings, vines, and other woody plants that can potentially grow tall enough to interfere with the power lines, grow on poles and equipment or obstruct access to the right-of-ways. Only areas with undesirable vegetation that can potentially interfere with electric service are treated using low-volume backpack sprayers. SEC only uses non-glyphosate mixes.
All herbicides used on the system have been tested and approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Contractors hired to complete the herbicide applications are Registered Technicians and supervised by a Certified Commercial Applicator. The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services administers the exam to obtain these certifications and maintains a registry of licensed applicators.