Invasive tree pests, such as the emerald ash borer (EAB), pose serious challenges to Vermont’s communities. By planning ahead and preparing, your community can minimize the impact of invasive tree pests and reduce the risk of spreading them. Forest pest preparedness and response is ultimately the responsibility of municipal governments, businesses, and private landowners. Federal and state staff are available for technical assistance and early detection.
All Vermont communities are encouraged to plan for EAB. EAB has killed millions of ash trees from MI to NY. When EAB arrives, Vermont will have to deal with a large number of hazardous trees, loss of tree canopy, and budgetary demands within a short timeframe.
For example, it will cost the town of Hartford, Vermont an estimated $105,000 to remove and replace their village ash trees and $329,500 to remove large roadside ash. These trees provide residents roughly $241,171 annually in environmental benefits. These costs, however, can be minimized by developing a forest pest preparedness plan for your community.
Start Planning Now:
1. Educate yourself about invasive forest pests.
2. Learn about developing a Forest Pest Preparedness Plan.
When tree pests such as EAB arrive in Vermont, a preparedness plan will guide your community's response. Remember- what you do now to prepare will strongly impact what you’ll be dealing with down the road.
3. Form a local Forest Pest Planning and Response Team.
Team members will help implement and guide the plan as well as keep abreast of, coordinate, and communicate information to residents.
4. Brief decision-makers.
Meet with your community’s leaders and bring them up to speed on the issue. Staff can provide technical support with the latest information and strategy.
5. Develop a timeline and determine who is responsible for writing the plan.
6. Assess your community's level of preparedness and prioritize action steps.
Work through the Vermont Forest Pest Preparedness: Planning Worksheet (word doc or PDF) to help your community identify the policies, protocols, resources (equipment, labor and funding) and other actions needed to efficiently and effectively respond to a pest infestation.
7. Formalize the plan and have it officially adopted by the Selectboard, Conservation Commission, and/or other appropriate town committees.
8. Implement your preparedness plan.