North Dakota's Agriculture Department has enacted regulations to try to prevent or slow the movement of the emerald ash borer insect into North Dakota.
The beetle, which bores under the tree's bark, kills most infested ash trees within four years. The invasive insect has killed tens of millions of ash trees in 35 states.
“North Dakota has 90 million ash trees; ash being the most common tree in naturally forested areas, cities and shelterbelts,” Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said. “While EAB has not been found in North Dakota to date, it has been found in Sauk Centre, Minnesota; Winnipeg, Manitoba; and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.”
The federal Agriculture Department is terminating federal emerald ash borer regulations and redirecting resources toward a program focused on management, such as biocontrol, according to Goehring. That prompted the state's move.
The North Dakota regulations prevent the movement of ash products such as raw logs, firewood and nursery stock, as well as the insect itself into North Dakota from infested areas of the country. All hardwood firewood is regulated and cannot be transported into North Dakota from an infested area without having been treated or inspected by officials of that state. Firewood from partially infested states must be labeled as to county of origin.
The state is launching a local firewood finder to help North Dakotans and visitors easily find local firewood. The platform is free for users to post firewood for sale. Firewood sellers can fill out the form at www.nd.gov/ndda/firewood-finder to submit their information.