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Vegetation Management Plan

Managing vegetation along power line corridors represents your cooperative's commitment to safety and reliability. The work helps keep outages and blinks to a minimum, reduces the potential for the public to come in contact with electric lines and helps our line crews access the line for maintenance and outage restoration. A professional forestry team oversees this program for the cooperative.

Scheduled Maintenance Cycles
Performing work on routine maintenance cycles every 4 to 6 years has proven to be the most effective and efficient way to accomplish routine tree and brush management work. Re-clearing work begins at the substation and extends to the end of the circuit. The work includes tree removal, pruning and clearing of brush. Learn more on the Removal & Pruning of Trees page.

Two growing seasons after the re-clearing, licensed applicators treat the re-sprouting brush in the corridors using state registered herbicides. These applications are crucial in controlling our costs because they are approximately one-third the cost of mechanical mowing and several times less expensive than manual cutting. They promote the growth of vegetation that benefits wildlife and provides good access for our line personnel. More information about how herbicides are used by our cooperative can be found on the Managing with Herbicides page.

If your location is scheduled for re-clearing or herbicide applications, you will receive a letter or postcard before the work begins. More information can be found in our Trees & Power Lines Brochure.

Unscheduled or “Off-Cycle” Maintenance
We conduct routine patrols to identify line defects that need repairing. During these patrols, the certified arborist also looks for problem trees. Problem trees can include dead, dying, uprooting, or storm damaged trees. Some trees have grown faster than expected and are in close contact with the lines. Problem trees can be the cause of service interruptions, line damage, fires or other safety concerns. We dispatch tree crews to do necessary removal or pruning work. Trees posing a high risk of falling on the lines are marked with red paint and will be removed while other trees just require pruning.

Occasionally members need help with a tree removal or want branches pruned and they call us for assistance. Learn more on our Requests For Tree Work page. Due to the increasing expense of off-cycle tree work we are unable to assist with debris disposal. Learn more on the Debris Disposal page. Trees and limbs are left unprocessed at the work site for the member to use or dispose of. Off-cycle work is normally performed without advance notice, unless the tree is located in a home landscape.

We appreciate the understanding and cooperation we have received each year as we work to keep our system in optimum condition. We are confident that our investment in vegetation management results in a safer, more reliable electric system. If you would like more information, please contact ECE’s forestry services team at 1-866-293-9068.

The following professional tree contractors currently perform this work for ECE. Click the link to reach their websites for more information:

Asplundh Tree Expert Company

Carr's Tree Service

Davey Resource Group

Environmental Consultants (ECI)

Haakenson Enterprises

Lake States Tree Service

New Age Tree Service

Wright Tree Service

Yetzer Tree Service (YTS)

If you are interested in a career with one of our contractors, please go to their website or contact them directly.
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