Is Reliability-Centered Vegetation Management a Standard of Care? — International Society of Arboriculture

Is Reliability-Centered Vegetation Management a Standard of Care? (#UAA 4)

William Porter 1
  1. CN Utility Consulting, Chicago, IL, United States

In recent years, electric utility regulators, utility companies and vegetation management departments have become engaged in an electric reliability-focused approach to utility vegetation management (UVM). Many states have reliability targets that must be met and most utility companies now report their reliability achievements annually. UVM departments, which have long struggled with sufficient funds to manage system workloads, have adopted the reliability-centered approach as a way to manage costs, measure program efficacy and improvements and assert program effectiveness to upper management, the regulators and the public. This presentation will identify the various reliability regulations, reporting requirements and metrics in use in North America today. The presenter will analyze the impact of these initiatives on vegetation management programs and draw conclusions on whether the current understanding of reliability is an appropriate standard of care for utility vegetation management. The following topics will be covered in this discussion:

1.     A review of reliability-focused regulations in the US and Canada

2.     What are the utility company responses to reliability regulations?

3.     A characterization of reliability-centered vegetation management (RCVM)

4.     What are the reliability-centered maintenance impacts on UVM programs short-term and long-term?

5.     A discussion on whether RCVM meets specific objectives such as environmental optimization, safety and customer satisfaction

6.     Recommendations for enhancing the reliability-centered maintenance approach to UVM

This presentation will answer the question of whether UVM programs sufficiently satisfy objectives that are not the primary targets of RCVM.