The Right-of-Way Stewardship Council (ROWSC) is an accreditation program that establishes standards for responsible right-of-way vegetation management along corridors. The program promotes the application of Integrated Vegetation Management (IVM) and best management practices to utility vegetation managers in order to maintain power system reliability and address ecological concerns.
The accreditation provides standards of excellence for environmental stewardship and presents the opportunity for companies to demonstrate their commitment to such standards. Third-party recognition ensures an independent, proven process to convey credibility and bring recognition to IVM programs. The benefits of the accreditation reach beyond the practitioner’s sphere; it has the potential to positively impact the industry, communities, stakeholders and agencies.
The ROWSC model follows the lead of the Electric Power Research Institute’s (EPRI) Standards for Assessing Performance of Integrated Vegetation Management on Rights-of-Way and is informed by other well-established accreditation programs found in the forest industry such as the Forest Stewardship Council and Sustainable Forestry Initiative. The ROWSC has established management standards based on a set of predetermined principles, requires a formal application process, and enlists third-party auditors to ensure compliance with standards.
The ROWSC Accreditation Standards for Assessing Integrated Vegetation Management (IVM) Excellence establish the technical requirements for applicants seeking ROW Steward accreditation. The standards are applied in an independent audit of an applicant’s integrated vegetation management program to aid in identifying excellence. The standards support excellence and environmental stewardship in responsible vegetation management within high-voltage electric transmission corridors. The standards were revised following completion of pilot assessments and the use of interim standards in 2013.
The Right-of-Way Stewardship Council is a program managed by Dovetail Partners, a Minneapolis-based environmental think tank. Dovetail provides program and organizational leadership services, working closely with the Council.
Visit the Right of Way Stewardship Council website
Kathryn Fernholz, Right of Way Stewardship Council Coordinator
+1 (612) 333-0430