Michigan agriculture division proposes exterior firewood quarantine

GAYLORD — The Michigan Section of Agriculture and Rural Growth is proposing a quarantine on exterior firewood to avert the introduction of undesirable pests and illnesses into the state.

Under the proposal, firewood transported into Michigan would have to be licensed as heat treated at a temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit for at minimum 60 minutes.

Kiln-dried lumber and wooden chips lesser than just one inch and logs or wooden shipped from out-of-point out sources immediately to mills and other amenities for speedy processing would be exempt.

Over 140 pests and ailments can be moved by firewood, which includes Asian prolonged-horned beetle, mountain pine beetle and spotted lanternfly. These pests are not known to exist in Michigan but could be accidentally brought into the state by vacationers transporting firewood, the department (MDARD) claimed.