Preserve Maine's Forests: Choose Local or Heat-Treated Firewood!
May 26, 2023
For more information contact: Kent Nelson at: Kent.Nelson@maine.gov (207) 650-0280
Augusta, ME - The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry (DACF) urges Mainers and visitors to prioritize using local or heat-treated firewood. It's not just a smart decision; it's also a legal requirement, as there are stringent restrictions on the movement of certain firewood. Remember, untreated firewood from out-of-state is banned (maine.gov/firewood), and transporting hardwood firewood from within specific quarantine areas is strictly prohibited (maine.gov/eab).
When moving firewood, people often overlook the potential risks, assuming it is harmless or the cost of wood is too high at their destination. However, they unknowingly carry destructive insects and diseases that can have far more significant consequences. Once introduced, these pests and diseases have the potential to devastate our ornamental trees and forest habitats and impact fish, wildlife, and property values, resulting in substantial management costs.
Whether for campfires or warmth during cool evenings, it is vital to obtain firewood from a local source (ideally within 10 miles) or opt for heat-treated wood. The truth is firewood from distant locations has been responsible for introducing the Asian longhorned beetle, emerald ash borer, oak wilt, southern pine beetle, brown spruce long-horned beetle, and numerous other forest destroying pests to new areas. Find treated or local firewood sources conveniently through the Firewood Scout website.
- What: Protect Maine's Forests: Out-of-state firewood inspections
- When: Maine Forest Rangers and other officials will be stationed at key locations starting Memorial Day weekend to enforce Maine's ban on imported firewood. This ban is crucial in mitigating the significant risk posed by untreated firewood carrying destructive insects.
- Why: Inspecting firewood carried by vehicles registered outside of Maine is critical to slow the spread of invasive species. Rangers and other officials will engage with people to raise awareness about invasive pest threats, provide information, and answer questions. Additionally, they will enhance their presence at prominent private and public campgrounds and other key locations.
Let's unite to protect Maine's invaluable forests by using local or heat-treated firewood. Comply with the ban on imported firewood and follow best management practices and regulations on movement of firewood originating in the emerald ash borer quarantine area.
Together, we can preserve the natural beauty and ecological balance that defines our beloved state.