Project to harmonize urban trees with electricity lines
In order to prevent the risk of falling trees, ensure the continuity of the electricity supply of its customers and contribute to caring for the environment, reducing future electric pruning and improving the quality of urban trees, Enel, since 2019, carries out a long-term plan for the renewal of trees that are in poor phytosanitary status under the overhead distribution lines, together with municipalities and the community. The objective is to raise awareness of the need for healthy urban trees that coexist in harmony with the electrical networks.
The deterioration, aging, diseases and weakening of the roots of the trees in the city, has made it clear that a considerable number of different species present a risk of accident for the community, especially considering the new climatic conditions that have arisen in the recent years, such as winds over 60 km / hour and snow, which sometimes cause branches or trees to fall completely, on houses, vehicles and power lines, generating power outages. The project replaces trees that are in poor phytosanitary status with trees with a maximum height of 4m in adult stage, low water requirements and resistant to pests, which will be able to coexist in harmony with the electricity grid.
The project has the following stages:
- In conjunction with the municipality of the respective borough, the scope of the pilot is defined, selecting critical areas according to criteria of electrical failures and the presence of diseased and aged trees.
- The risk of the existing trees is evaluated, through a specialist company and an ITO, and the species to be used for replacement are suggested.
- A communication process is carried out with the surrounding communities.
- The specimen exchange begins.
In 2019, the first point was implemented in Quinta Normal commune that considered the replacement of 17 trees. In 2020, the project was launched in La Reina commune, for the replacement of some trees located in Echeñique street, between Palmas de Mallorca and Santa Rita. By 2030, the aim is to cover all the communes in the concession area.
The execution of this project allows:
- Raise awareness that it is possible to achieve a good coexistence between urban trees and the overhead power grid.
- Protect distribution lines and ensure continuity of electricity supply to customers.
- Improve the state of urban trees that may present a risk to the community, pedestrians and vehicles.