S.D. emerald ash-borer embargo softens a bit

Capitol News Bureau

PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — Minnehaha, Lincoln and Turner counties remain in a wood quarantine of sorts because of emerald ash-borer infestations.

But in a few weeks, a years-old restriction against untreated wood being brought in will loosen a little.

Processing facilities in the three eastern South Dakota counties are about to be allowed to accept untreated wood from a few neighboring counties across the border.

The wood will have to ship directly to a facility from Rock County in Minnesota or from Lyon and Sioux counties in Iowa, and be brought in specifically for treatment.

After the wood arrives, it will have to be heat-treated or fumigated or chipped or de-barked to South Dakota Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources standards.

The department received clearance Monday from the Legislature’s Rules Review Committee. Brenda Sievers made the presentation.

The move comes after the federal government lifted regulation of emerald ash borers on January 1, 2021.

The South Dakota change allows importation of wood, under tight conditions, from a county outside the state’s border into a neighboring area of South Dakota that is in emerald ash-borer quarantine.

Several companies mentioned Monday that can take the wood are Mueller Pallets south of Sioux Falls and Poet biorefining.

The state Game, Fish and Parks Department meanwhile continues its restrictions on campsite wood in Minnehaha, Turner and Lincoln counties.

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