Monday, April 24, 2017

Franklin County commission voices concerns about Duke Energy herbicide program

Franklin County Commissioners say they have some reservations about a herbicide spraying program planned by Duke Energy.

Duke Energy said it will begin praying herbicides along their power poles in areas where tree trimming was done last year.

Over the next 6 months or so they plan to spray vegetation under the lines using low volume selective herbicide applications.

Duke Energy has done these types of sprayings in the past and plan to use the exact same herbicide mixture they did last year.

The herbicides include Rodeo, Arsenal, and milestone – most of which are considered relatively safe for most birds, mammals and fish.

The compaound that causes the most concern is called Aqufact and it is toxic to aquatic organisms and could cause long-term effect in aquatic environments.

County Commissioners have always been concerned by herbicide use in the county especially if it can impact the Apalachicola Bay.

Commissioner Cheryl Sanders said she opposes Duke Energy's plan and would like them to consider other herbicides.

Commissioners agreed to ask that Erik Lovestrand, the county's extension director, be given the chance to recommend herbicides that might be safer for the bay.