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Joyce Endee

Out-of-state firewood to be banned

May 04, 2011
SHELBURNE — On or around June 1, the state of New Hampshire will likely issue a formal ban on bringing firewood into the state.

That was the message delivered by Forest Ranger John Accardi of the state Division of Forests and Lands at Friday's 21st annual Cos Foresters Mud Breakfast at the Town and Country Motor Inn.

At the moment the only official ban on moving firewood is that it cannot be brought onto state parks or other lands held by the state Department of Resources and Economic Development (DRED).

Firewood has been found to be the primary vector or source of forest insect pests, and the Division is trying hard to keep such species as the Asian longhorned beetle, emerald ash borer, and the hemlock woolly adelgid from devastating the state's forests, Accardi explained.

The new regulations will be set up so that commercial timber harvesters and haulers will not be adversely affected. Their products are processed so quickly that they are not considered to be a problem.

A process will also be established to allow commercial firewood producers to operate, the forest ranger said. Kiln-dried firewood will not be affected.

A website — dontmovefirewood.org — provides information on the topic, Accardi said.

The Forests and Lands website already points out: "Firewood may contain non-native insects and plant diseases. Bringing firewood into New Hampshire from other areas can accidentally spread damaging insects and diseases that will threaten the health of our forests. Once infestation occurs, control of these pests involves drastic measures, including complete removal of all trees — infested or otherwise — in the affected and surrounding areas.

"Firewood can look normal, but still be infested with the immature stage of some insects," the website warns. "Don't assume wood is safe just because you don't see adult insects!

Martin Lord & Osman
Salmon Press
Varney Smith
Garnett HIll
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