Friday, June 13, 2008


Many locals burn firewood. Be careful now with these new restrictions:

NY bans shipping firewood in effort to stop harmful insects

Conservation officials have banned hauling, importing or selling untreated firewood in New York in an effort to stop the spread of tree-killing insects. The Department of Environmental Conservation said Wednesday the emergency regulations are effective immediately for 90 days. They prohibit importing out-of-state firewood unless treated to eliminate invasive insect species, fungi and pathogens. Transporting any untreated firewood within the state is limited to less than 50 miles. "These invasive pests and diseases have a damaging effect, not only on the environment but also the economy," DEC Commissioner Pete Grannis said. "One of the easiest and most common ways for these pests to spread is by the unintentional transportation of infested firewood."

The Sirex woodwasp - native to Europe, Asia and northern Africa - kills pines and sometimes other conifers by introducing a toxic mucus and fungus when the female lays her eggs through the bark and into the sapwood. It has been found in 28 counties in the state, DEC spokesman Yancey Roy said. The Emerald Ash Borer, native to China, has destroyed an estimated 20 million ash trees nationally since the beetle was noticed in Michigan five years ago and has been found as far east as Pennsylvania. The Asian Longhorned Beetle, which appeared in the New York metropolitan area in 1996, has larvae that bore into trees and feed on healthy wood until emerging as adult beetles to eat twigs and leaves. Some 17 species of hardwoods are vulnerable, including four varieties of maples, elm, birch, poplar, willow, ash and sycamore.