The CEMIG (a Brazilian power company) created "Special Program for Integrated Management of Trees and Networks" - PREMIAR, in 2009 for the purpose of developing studies that would allow the power company to reduce the amount of lost electrical power occurrences in Belo Horizonte, the state capital of Minas Gerais. One of the studies was the creation of a database with both historical information about urban trees, and the electric distribution network, and how they impact each other.
After a severe storm, it is common in Brazil that the media will release statements made by environmentalists who accuse the utilities of worrying only about reliability and distance between trees and the network instead of focusing on the importance of integrated management of urban trees. These statements argue that the improper pruning could be one of the reasons for failure since these fallen trees have acquired a V-shaped silhouette. Seeking a solution, the PREMIAR Program assembled a team of professionals to analyze and determine the cause of these failures....(Read more...)