The emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis) is a destructive wood-boring pest of ash trees (Fraxinus spp.). Native to China, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the Russian Far East, the emerald ash borer beetle (EAB) was unknown in North America until its discovery in southeast Michigan in 2002. Today, EAB infestations have been detected in 35 states and the District of Columbia; Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. APHIS works with State cooperators to detect, control and prevent the human-assisted spread of the pest in order to safeguard America’s ash trees. More information about the EAB Program can be found in the documents below.
APHIS is changing its approach to fight the EAB infestation that has spread through much of the United States. On December 15, the Agency published a final rule that removes the federal domestic EAB quarantine regulations. APHIS has been transparent about the challenges associated with controlling EAB and that the domestic quarantine has not proven effective in stopping its spread. The Agency has worked to identify more effective and less intrusive methods and will direct available resources toward non-regulatory options for management and containment of the pest, such as rearing and releasing biological control agents. Removing the quarantine regulations ends APHIS' domestic regulatory activities, which includes actions such as issuing permits, certificates and compliance agreements, making site visits, and conducting investigations of suspected violations.
The final rule and the response to the comments APHIS received are available in the Federal Register and the rule became effective on January 14, 2021. Documents may be viewed online at https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=APHIS-2017-0056.
National Policy Manager