BOSTON (CBS) – Responding to worries from many Cape Cod residents, NSTAR announced it has voluntary extended a moratorium on herbicide use through the end of 2011.

NSTAR says its decision will allow more time to study herbicide and pesticide usage and reduction.

In order to avoid any appearance of influence on the study, NSTAR will not provide funding for the study and will have only limited involvement in it.

NSTAR’s Director of Planning, Scheduling and Contractor Services. Steve Sullivan says he believes the company’s Integrated Vegetation Management Program is safe and effective, but, “we also take very seriously our role as good corporate citizens and this moratorium extension further demonstrates our willingness to work toward a Cape-wide reduction of herbicide use.”

As an alternative, NSTAR crews will resume clear-cut mowing to keep branches and bushes away from power lines.

Federal regulations have required utilities to follow strict standards when it comes to brush. Those rules went into effect after the Northeast blackout of 2003.


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