Will you join the mission to help protect natural resources
It is up to us to protect our drinking water we rely upon daily,
we are the stewards here and it is our turn to care for our precious land
and the natural resources upon it!
~ Cape Cod has unique Hydrology thus Toxicology is a major concern ~
On average the #6 Lenses under sandy soil on Cape Cod are less than 30 feet below surface level. With sand as our soil anything we add to our land and whatever we use that goes down drains inside our homes, will permeate to the lenses we drink from.
So remember to use manual or mechanical methods when maintaining your land!
A - Hand pruning - cut down by hand with pruners and loppers what may harm electric wires in time. This is the best way to maintain vegetation because it is thorough. As current applicators spray one plant at at time, it is possible to cut each plant instead.
B - “Weed heaters” - this type of hand held propane tool will heat plants down to the ground. The advantage of this method is that plant ash becomes food for remaining vegetation.
It is an easy, cost effective solution one plant at a time. In nature selective burning rejuvenates areas becoming beneficial nutrition to the area. Google weed heaters to learn more.
The ways below will take down all vegetation (but it's still better than any product used):
A - Mowing - this is the way ROW power lines were maintained prior to herbicide use, once every 7 years. Granted it is messy, disturbing to animals, cuts back more than necessary, it still won't harm natural resources here. Mow in the Fall not Spring time is another suggestion for less harm to animals.
B - Goats - are a great way to maintain vegetation and they will eat poison ivy too. There is a goat farm in Barnstable with 20 goats who need to be fed, the owners are aware of ROW corridors and are willing to help if allowed. The only drawback is they will eat everything, good vegetation as well but they don’t need gasoline and they leave fertilizer as an added bonus!
The World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IHRC) recognizes glyphosate as a probable carcinogen, potentially causing types of cancer especially non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in humans, and others in lab animals. It is recognized as a probable cause of acute renal failure, which is epidemic in a number of tropical-latitude agricultural societies. The state of California lists glyphosate as a cancer-causing agent on labels of the product.
For many years, fire-suppressing foams containing Perfluroalkylated compounds were used at the Barnstable Airport and Fire Training Academy. These were federally approved chemicals, used in many other applications. More recent investigations have revealed previously unknown and significant health risks attributed to exposure to these compounds. In response, the EPA set new permissible limits for drinking water. Well fields down-gradient from the airport and FTA were found to have higher-than-permitted concentrations of several of these compounds. An expensive remediation effort, with pumping and filtering of the water, is underway, and will last for years. Barnstable County will be liable for at least 3-4 million dollars of this cleanup.
Given the known current scientific concerns about the herbicides used on the rights-of-way, prudence would dictate that their use be curtailed now. The extent of contamination of our aquifer would make cleanup efforts unaffordable for every Town and the County.
The label is the law: See links listed showing the labels for each herbicide. Read the environmental hazards. Does this make you feel comfortable as a town leader allowing it in your town when there are alternative ways to maintain vegetation overgrowth along ROW’s? In Eversource’s VMP, it states they have a goal of “reducing the risk of unreasonable adverse effects to the health and well being of humans, animals and the environment.” Using herbicides contradicts this statement. Here is the label of each one of the herbicides used: Glyphosate, Ammonium Fosamine, Triclopyr, Metsulfuron Methyl, Imazapyr. Google the labels of each of these and please read Environmental Hazards.
Toxic plume in Eastham: It was discovered in 2012 that the Eastham dump had percolated enough toxins through sandy soils to contaminate wells, forcing the town to pay for bottled water for the neighborhoods affected. Whether water is drawn from private or public wells, it comes from the same source.