Nebraska Public Power District will be completing work next week to remove vegetation from the Sutherland Canal to improve water flows.

The Sutherland Canal has seen increased amounts of vegetation growing in the canal over the past several years from the Lake Ogallala diversion up to the Sutherland Reservoir.

The increased vegetation has started to restrict flows during the summer months and limit the amount of water delivered to Sutherland Reservoir, which provides cooling water for Gerald Gentleman electric generating station.

“This application will ensure the canal can operate properly heading into the warm summer months when it is needed,” NPPD Engineer Specialist Josh Staab said. “The herbicide will degrade as it moves through the canal and dissipate by the time it reaches the Sutherland Reservoir.” 

The first herbicide application will take place on Tuesday, May 14, to treat the aquatic plants that grow under the water. A second application will take place later the same week using a drone to apply a herbicide to the banks of the canal above the current water level, which are difficult to reach by boat or vehicle.

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