Emerald Ash Borer Impacts Study

In 2002, Emerald ash borer (EAB) was first discovered in the City of Detroit, Michigan where it is theorized it was brought over from its native range in Asia. In 2009, EAB was first discovered in Saint Paul, placing Minnesota among the growing list of states and provinces that are now reluctant homes to this invasive pest. The emerald ash borer larvae feed on the inner bark of ash trees, disrupting the tree's ability to transport water and nutrients, killing the host tree. In areas where EAB is present, green, white, and black ash trees have been observed to have near 99% mortality rate. As there are an estimated 1 billion ash trees in the urban and forested areas in Minnesota, the threat that EAB poses to the state is clear.

Project Goals

  1. Determine the steps our partners along the river are taking to manage EAB, and compile the results into a best management practices document.

  2. Assess the carbon storage properties of the ash tree population in Mississippi National River and Recreation Area. As ash trees make up nearly a quarter of the trees in MISS, they represent a significant amount of stored carbon (a contributing greenhouse gas). The death of the trees would release this carbon back into the atmosphere.

  3. Identify what impacts the loss of ash tree would have on areas of scenic and recreational value, as well as on animal habitat, erosion control, water quality, etc

Project Manager:
Mary Hammes, Environmental Stewardship and Volunteer Manager
Mississippi Park Connection

We will be working with our partners in both the cities and counties within the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area as well as other land managers, the Minnesota GreenCorps, the University of Minnesota, and others to add tools for entities to use to educate and combat the spread of Emerald ash borer.

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