PIERRE, S.D. – On May 13, the South Dakota Department of Agriculture, with support from the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, launched a Don’t Move Firewood pledge to encourage support and advocacy for protecting South Dakota’s natural resources by not moving untreated firewood.

Trees play an important role in our communities, as well as on our farms and ranches. However, non-native insects and diseases are killing these important parts of our ecosystems and causing millions of dollars of damage to communities and forests across the nation. These insects and diseases can’t move far on their own, but when people move firewood they can jump hundreds of miles.

In May of 2018, emerald ash borer, a destructive exotic beetle, was discovered in Sioux Falls. Now more than ever, it is imperative that South Dakotans buy or collect firewood where they plan to burn it or buy certified heat-treated firewood.

To help incentivize everyone to not move firewood, all South Dakotans that take the pledge before June 30, 2019, at midnight CT, will be entered to win “The Perfect Camping Set,” including a tent, sleeping bags, and outdoor cooking equipment.

Take the pledge by going to sdda.sd.gov/Firewood/Pledge.aspx.

For more information on emerald ash borer in South Dakota, go to http://emeraldashborerinsouthdakota.sd.gov/.

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