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General Permit for Utility Rights of Way Vegetation Management, GP-0-21-002

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has issued a General Permit GP-0-21-002 (PDF) for use by electric and gas utility companies to manage vegetation by selective pruning, mowing, and cutting of vegetation and the application of registered pesticides in existing utility rights-of-way (ROW) located within state regulated freshwater wetlands, regulated wetland adjacent areas, and tidal wetlands, for the purposes of maintaining integrity of service, reliability and safety of electrical and natural gas systems.

GP-0-21-002 will replace existing individual vegetation management permits that have previously been issued to utility companies that operate in New York State. This General Permit includes a revised streamlined application review process, which will allow for a more thorough tracking of the vegetation management work that is conducted and authorized in Utility Rights of Way. It also incorporates uniform submission requirements for all utility companies, including more consistent reviews across the state, in each of the DEC regions, and the establishment of uniform permitting requirements and conditions.

GP-0-21-002 authorizes the following activities:

  1. jurisdictional activities associated with, and necessary for, the selective pruning, trimming, mowing, cutting and other approved removal methods of trees and vegetation; and
  2. the application of NYSDEC and USEPA registered pesticides and approved surfactants, subject to the following setback requirements:
    • greater than 5 linear feet from streams or standing water for stump treatment,
    • greater than 15 linear feet from streams or standing water for backpack treatment.

GP-0-21-002 limits pesticide use to low volume foliar spray from a backpack sprayer, cut stem and/or stump treatment and must be conducted in a manner that prevents drift of pesticides into waterbodies or standing water. Large scale use of pesticides is not authorized in this GP. Utility companies must submit to DEC an annual vegetative management plan (AVMP) which provides the specifics of the work to be performed as well as precautions, and/or protections to protect state or federal listed plants/animals, special habitats, and/or invasive species.

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  • Division of Environmental Permits
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    Albany NY 12233-1750
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