Committee Chair

Boyd, Jennifer M.

Committee Member

Dattilo, Adam J.; Alp, Neslihan

Department

Dept. of Biological and Environmental Sciences

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Publisher

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Place of Publication

Chattanooga (Tenn.)

Abstract

The safe operation of electric transmission lines necessitates the suppression of tall, woody vegetation on associated rights-of-way (ROWs). Native warm season grasses (NWSG) are more expensive for ROW revegetation compared to typical exotic cool season grasses (ECSG), but they may alter the successional trajectory such that long-term maintenance costs are reduced. I conducted a cost-benefit analysis to determine if ROW revegetation with NWSG is cost effective compared to ECSG. I synthesized cost information obtained from the Tennessee Valley Authority regarding ROW planting and maintenance and data collected from a feasibility study of ROWs planted with NWSG. Revegetation with NWSG was found to be 6% more expensive than ECSG. The degree of woody suppression to make NWSG a worthwhile investment was found to be 12-21% using a break-even analysis. Despite the initial greater expense of NWSG, associated potential maintenance savings and indirect ecological, environmental, social, and economic benefits favor their use.

Acknowledgments

Tennessee Valley Authority; Roundstone Native Seed LLC; Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Degree

M. S.; A thesis submitted to the faculty of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science.

Date

5-2015

Subject

Roadside plants; Grasses; Revegetation; Electric lines -- Environmental aspects; Electric power distribution -- Environmental aspects; Landscape assessment -- Tennessee River Valley region

Name

Tennessee Valley Authority -- Environmental aspects

Keyword

native grass; cost benefit analysis; right-of-way; Tennessee Valley Authority; succession; construction stormwater

Document Type

Masters theses

Extent

xi, 96 leaves

Language

English

Rights

Under copyright.

License

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

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