Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week 2024 WEBINAR SERIES

 

Get ready for another awesome webinar series! Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week is May 20-26th of 2024 and we are coming in hot this year with SIX webinars over the first three days of the week!

In addition to our normal EAB awareness outreach, we at Don’t Move Firewood have partnered with Purdue University’s EABU to highlight this notorious tree pest by hosting a few emerald ash borer themed webinars. Hear from researchers and managers alike over the course of three days. We’ll talk about exciting new developments in ash tree breeding and resistance, research findings on best management strategies, and important updates on management responses to EAB. Of course, we will also include one of our Meet the Team webinars to share what the staff of Don’t Move Firewood has been up to and how we’re helping partners with customized outreach strategies to reach visitors before they travel with potentially infested wood. Read on to learn more and register!

Shareable Flyer here: EAB-Awareness-Week-2024_WebinarsFLYER_v2

To start us off, Rachel Kappler from Holden Forest & Garden along with Jennifer Koch from USFS Northern Research Station join us to talk about ash tree breeding and EAB resistance.

Monday, May 20th at 12pm EST

Ash Tree Breeding and Resistance to Emerald Ash Borer

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Next up we will hear from Dr. Emma Hudgins, professor at University of Melbourne, on her research and recent publication analyzing the most effective management strategies for reducing the impacts of EAB in the United States.

Monday, May 20th at 5pm EST

Spread Management Priorities to Limit Emerald Ash Borer

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 Later we will hear from The Don’t Move Firewood team and learn about the education and outreach efforts of our campaign including an overview of why it’s important, how you can access our many resources, and what we’ve got to offer both the everyday firewood user as well as professionals in the field of forest health.

Tuesday, May 21st at 12pm EST

Meet the Don’t Move Firewood Team and Learn How You Can Get Involved

  • Register Here
  • Contact Laurel Downs at laurel.downs@tnc.org or Leigh Greenwood at LGreenwood@tnc.org

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 Bob Bruner is up next from Purdue University as he discusses management and options for ash tree care in the aftermath of emerald ash borer infestation.

Tuesday, May 21st at 3pm EST

After Emerald Ash Borer: Can I Save My Trees?

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 Then we will hear from our friends up north as Chris MacQuarrie from Natural Resources Canada and Arvind Vasudevan of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency discuss recent management updates for EAB in Canada.

Wednesday, May 22st at 12pm EST

The Tiny Green Menace in the Great White North

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 Finally, to wrap up the series, Max Ragozzino from the Oregon Department of Agriculture Division of Insect Pests as he discusses recent management updates for EAB in Oregon.

Wednesday, May 22nd at 3pm EST (12pm PST)

Updates and Management Response to EAB in Oregon

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Thank you to all our speakers and attendees!

 

Chasing after the eclipse? Leave tree pests behind…

On Monday April 8th 2024, a total eclipse of the sun will be visible in a roughly 115 mile wide swath (called the path of totality) crossing North America as it passes over Mexico, the United States, and Canada. Millions of travelers are expected to camp out over the weekend so they can be in the best viewing area on Monday to see the amazing spectacle of a complete solar eclipse. The Nature Conservancy is asking everyone that plans to use firewood for the solar eclipse celebration weekend to buy local firewood near their destination, bring packaged certified heat-treated firewood, or gather their firewood responsibly on site if permitted by the campground or landowner.

“Make smart choices for your solar eclipse party; drink plenty of water, bring extra solar eclipse glasses, and buy or collect local firewood.” says Leigh Greenwood, Don’t Move Firewood campaign manager for The Nature Conservancy. “Your firewood choices during this solar eclipse celebration can prevent the spread of forest insects and diseases like the emerald ash borer, Asian longhorned beetle, spongy moth, and others on potentially infested wood.”

The path of the eclipse will cross into North America starting in Mexico, enter into the United States in Texas, and traveling through Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. Some parts of Tennessee and Michigan will experience the total solar eclipse as well. State and federal agencies in these areas are preparing to welcome hundreds of thousands of additional tourists arriving just prior to the eclipse. Many of these states have regulations that affect the movement of firewood either INTO their states (to protect against new pest introductions) or OUT of their states (to prevent the further spread of existent pest infestations).

A prime example of a hitchhike pest that could easily spread as people travel out of quarantined areas is the spotted lanternfly. See the pictures below to compare the path of totality with a map of known infestation. Spotted lanternfly eggs blend in incredibly well with things like firewood.

Screenshot of NASA’s Eclipse Explorer. Visit https://science.nasa.gov/eclipses/future-eclipses/eclipse-2024/where-when/
Reported spotted lanternfly distribution. https://cornell.app.box.com/v/slf-distribution-map-detail
Spotted lanternfly egg masses on stump.

Many states and provinces in the path of the eclipse have regulations on the movement of firewood, with rules varying greatly according to local jurisdictions and pest situations. Some states, parks, and campgrounds prohibit the entry of outside firewood unless it is packaged with a certified stamp of heat treatment. Call ahead to check on your specific campground, or find state and federal regulations at the Don’t Move Firewood map, found at www.dontmovefirewood.org/map

Following are tips from the Don’t Move Firewood campaign:

  • Get your firewood as near as possible to where you will burn it!
  • The trees cut for firewood in your backyard or town often died due to insects or diseases. Don’t spread pests such as the emerald ash borer – don’t move firewood. Instead, buy it where you’ll burn it, buy certified heat treated firewood, or gather firewood on site if permitted.
  • Aged or seasoned wood is not considered safe to move, as some pests can infest stacked firewood at any time. Certified heat treated bundled firewood is a safer option if you must transport firewood.
  • Firewood cannot be deemed safe just by looking at it. Even firewood that looks “clean” could still harbor tiny insect eggs or microscopic fungal spores that could start a new and deadly infestation of forest pests.
  • Tell your friends and others about the risks of moving firewood – no one wants to be responsible for starting a new pest infestation.

For more information on the 2024 solar eclipse, see here: https://science.nasa.gov/eclipses/future-eclipses/eclipse-2024/where-when/

For DMF digital graphics with eclipse art:

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NOTE TO OUR PARTNERS IN FIREWOOD EDUCATION: This blog was written with the express intent of providing ideas and quotes that you can use in your own outreach efforts. You are free to use portions of this blog for your own needs in firewood education. Please do not alter any part of the three direct quotes without prior written permission. Please refer to the Don’t Move Firewood campaign in your release, and include either https://www.dontmovefirewood.org/, https://www.dontmovefirewood.org/map, or https://www.dontmovefirewood.org/2024_eclipse/ as a reference. If you have questions about attribution, please email the Don’t Move Firewood staff via our Contact Us page.

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WEBINAR: Firewood Month 2023 – Meet the Don’t Move Firewood Team!

October is Firewood Month and we’re back with 2 call options for Meet the Don’t Move Firewood Team Webinars!

These webinars took place in October 2023 during Firewood Month. We discussed the education and outreach efforts of the Don’t Move Firewood campaign including an overview of what the campaign does, why it’s important, how you can access our many resources, and what we’ve got to offer both the everyday firewood user as well as professionals in the field of forest health. And because we’ve had increased interest since the publication of our  Firewood Regulations, Certifications, and Outreach Comparison Report, we discussed how our findings can help forest health professionals improve education and outreach in their states to reduce the spread of forest pests via the firewood pathway. There were two call options in October to accommodate different time zones and schedules.

Tell your colleagues, tell your friends – let’s talk firewood!

Click Here for the recording of Call Option 1 that took place on October 12 at 2pm EST

Click Here for recording of Call Option 2 that took place on October 18 at 10am EST

Disposing of Woody Storm Debris from Asian Longhorned Beetle Host Trees

Hurricane season is upon us. Please stay safe!

The following is an important Alert from our friends at USDA APHIS and Clemson University’s Department of Plant Industry regarding the South Carolina Asian Longhorned Beetle Eradication Program in light of Storm Idalia:

——— NOTICE ———-

If you live in Charleston/Dorchester counties in South Carolina and are in the Asian longhorned beetle (ALB) quarantine, please be safe through storm Idalia.

Please dispose of woody storm debris from ALB host trees at the Bees Ferry Road Convenience Center, 1344 Bees Ferry Road, 29414, or the Hollywood Convenience Center, 5305 Highway 165, 29449. Any wood debris half an inch or more in diameter is considered regulated material and must be disposed of properly. Doing this helps prevent spreading the insect to other areas.

>>See Here for the South Carolina ALB Regulatory Boundary<<

ALB host trees include all species of the following 12 genera: Ash, Birch, Elm, Golden raintree, Horsechestnut/buckeye, Katsura, London planetree/sycamore, Maple, Mimosa, Mountain ash, Poplar, and Willow. The ALB quarantine applies to the beetle and all its life stages, firewood of all hardwood species, green lumber, and other living, dead, cut, or fallen materials which may include nursery stock, logs, stumps, roots, branches, and debris half an inch or more in diameter of all ALB host trees.

If you have any questions, please call 843-973-8329.

For information on how best to protect yourself from high winds and flooding, please visit https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes.

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Additional Web Resources:

REMINDER: Firewood, yard waste, and other wood and tree products could potentially contain beetles. Don’t take firewood from your backyard along with you when you go camping, fishing, or any activity where you might use firewood. Instead, buy local bundled firewood at or near your destination, or gather firewood on-site when permitted.

protect south carolina forests billboards

 

WEBINARS: Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week 2023!

Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week is May 22-28th of 2023 and we are ready with some excellent webinars!

This year, Emerald ash borer (EAB) Awareness Week is May 22-28th. In addition to our normal EAB awareness outreach, we at Don’t Move Firewood are highlighting this notorious tree pest by hosting a few EAB-focused webinars. Hear from researchers and managers alike over the course of three live webinars in two days. We talk about communication strategies and public acceptance of EAB management, what’s going on in Oregon and other states as EAB spreads in the West, and findings on EAB survivability in extreme cold temperatures. Read on to learn more and view the recordings.

Shareable Flyer here: EAB Awareness Week 2023 Webinars

To start us off, Dr. Ingrid Schneider out of the University of Minnesota will join us to talk about her research on modern communication strategies and public acceptance of emerald ash borer management.

Wednesday, May 24th at 3-4pm EST

Addressing EAB: Understanding and influencing public acceptance of management options as communication technology evolves

About the research:
Public information may improve understanding of and support for management actions, including invasive species like EAB. In the age of increasing information and accelerating technology, research reveals that increasingly engaging information has a greater impact on attitudes and behaviors than less-engaging information. In response to calls for expanded research on the role of information in invasive species perceptions and management, we address current public acceptance of select management approaches to EAB as well as if, and how, increasingly engaging information impacts visitor acceptance of and preferences for management response to EAB.

 

Next up we will hear from Responding to emerald ash borer’s western spread: management updates from Oregon and others, plus outreach strategies by DMF

Dr. Cody Holthouse out of Oregon’s Department of Agriculture, Insect Pest Prevention and Management Program and state plant regulatory official joins Don’t Move Firewood to talk about the ongoing efforts to manage EAB since it’s discovery in Oregon nearly one year ago. We also hear from Dr. Frank Etzler, State Survey Coordinator and Natural Resource Section Manager from Montana Department of Agriculture with updates and actions they’re taking to prepare for EAB infestation. Plus – find out what resources and outreach services are available from the Don’t Move Firewood campaign. Let’s slow the spread!

Thursday, May 25th at 1pm EST (10am PST)

Responding to Emerald ash borer’s western spread: management updates from Oregon and others, plus outreach strategies by DMF

 

Later we will hear from Dr. Meghan Duell out of The Couchiching Conservancy in Orillia, Ontario about her research findings on cold tolerance of EAB and implications for survivability and spread.

Thursday, May 25th at 3pm EST

Extreme Cold Tolerance of the Emerald Ash Borer

About the research:
Emerald ash borers must be able to survive winter in their larval stage in order to emerge and spread as adults the following summer. Cold temperatures are a potential barrier to their success, especially in their northernmost range and invasion front in Canada. However, emerald ash borers are able to acclimatize to new thermal conditions very quickly and can survive extremely low temperatures (around -60 °F). The consequences of this extreme cold tolerance are that low winter temperatures may not be as effective for limiting spread as hoped.

 

Thank you to all our speakers and attendees!

 

Webinar: New Date for Meet the Firewood Team

We have rescheduled our Meet the Don’t Move Firewood Team webinar for April 6th at 11am Mountain Time (1pm Eastern).

It’s a busy time of year for invasive species awareness. The last full week of February this year was National Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW); International Day of Forests is March 21, and Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month is April. Emerald Ash Borer Awareness Week and PlayCleanGo Week are right around the corner as well. In light of the events associated with these campaigns, here at Don’t Move Firewood, we thought it’d be great time to reach out with one of our popular Meet the Don’t Move Firewood Team webinars! We’ll discuss our education and outreach efforts- what the campaign does, why it’s important, how you can access our many resources, and what we’ve got to offer both the everyday firewood user as well as professionals in the field of forest health. And since the world of firewood regulations and outreach is an ever-changing landscape, we’ll be sure to go over our annual review of the nationally relevant Firewood Comparison Report to discuss updates since its publication early last year.

So tell your colleagues, tell your friends – let’s talk firewood!

UPDATE: thank you to all who participated in our Meeth the Firewood Team webinar!

Access the recording of this webinar on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TP2RgUM7Fnw

Click here to access the pdf version of the Power Point: DMF-TNC_Webinar_April6_2023

News Release: Strategies Identified for Successful Outreach to Reduce the Spread of Forest Pests on Firewood

Press Release for August 1, 2022
Contact: Angelica Solano: lsolano@clemson.edu

Collaborative study determines effective messengers, language choices, and modes of delivery for disseminating educational information on how firewood choices can impact forest health.

A recent study done in collaboration between The Nature Conservancy’s Don’t Move Firewood campaign and researchers from Clemson University showed that most people in the United States don’t know firewood can harbor invasive forest insects and diseases, but when targeted education materials are used effectively, they can learn and are likely to change their behavior. Researchers analyzed data from five surveys conducted from 2005 to 2016 to investigate what outreach on the firewood pathway can accomplish, and what are the most effective messengers and methods when educating the public on invasive pests and forest health.

The study showed less than half of the public (39%) said they have heard or seen firewood messaging and less than a quarter (19%) were aware of state laws or firewood regulations. Angelica Solano, lead author of the recent study published in Biological Invasions, said “we got feedback directly from the public on how to communicate better with them about insects and diseases spreading through firewood. We found that while the Don’t Move Firewood campaign and its partners have demonstrably increased the public’s awareness, there’s a strong need for continued and improved collaborative outreach efforts via effective modes, messengers, language choices, and message framing.”

Findings from the study suggest that the two best ways to reach the public with firewood educational messages are through campsite reservation confirmation emails and flyers handed out at parks. Additionally, the results of the study indicate that people trust forestry-related public agencies the most to learn about forest health issues.

Combining both pre-visit digital messaging with physical outreach materials when a visitor arrives improves the likelihood that the public will encounter and incorporate safer firewood behaviors over time. As Solano states, “conveying information directly to the public in ways that they will pay attention to, rather than having them look for the information, should improve message delivery.”

For all types of outreach materials, success hinges on effective phrasing to generate attention, and a positive framing was found to be most effective. As Solano said, “messages should focus on encouraging the public to make better choices, including how they will benefit from such choices. Using clear examples and language that encourage a positive call to action or ‘promotion’ rather than a reactive or ‘prevention’ approach, should be the first choice by outreach professionals.”

Finally, outreach campaigns focused on invasive species and forest health are wise to collaborate with state agencies to coordinate educational outreach efforts. Forestry-related public agencies, including both state and federal forest professionals, are the most likely to be trusted and heard. According to Solano, “Outreach groups like non-profits, universities, and others that partner with trusted state and federal forest agencies will improve their message delivery, which in turn increases awareness.”

Awareness Increased over Time from Firewood Education Campaigns

Results of the study show that more than a decade of dedicated efforts by firewood educational campaigns like Don’t Move Firewood have led not only to increased awareness, but increased concern over the spread of harmful insects and pathogens via the firewood pathway.

“It’s great to see confirmation that our messages and outreach techniques are working- and it’s wonderful to have solid direction on where there is room for improvement,” said Leigh Greenwood, The Nature Conservancy’s Don’t Move Firewood program director. “Outreach needs to change with the times, so that we can reach people in the most effective ways possible. This study gives us the information we need to protect trees and forests from the pests that travel on the firewood pathway.”

To access the study in Biological Invasions, visit:
Solano, A., Rodriguez, S.L., Greenwood, L., Rosopa, P.J., and Coyle, D.R. 2022. Achieving effective outreach for invasive species: firewood case studies from 2005-2016. Biological Invasions.
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10530-022-02848-w

To access the study via Springer Nature SharedIt, visit:
https://rdcu.be/cRRVH

To request a copy of this study from the author, contact the lead author at lsolano@g.clemson.edu

To learn more about Don’t Move Firewood and the ways you can help prevent the spread of harmful forest pests and diseases please visit https://www.dontmovefirewood.org/

To download a pdf version of this press release click here: Solano 2022 press_release_FINAL

Free Downloads for Tree Check Month 2022

August is Tree Check Month! Everyone is encouraged to take 10 minutes to check their trees for signs of the Asian longhorned beetle. To help you learn about the beetle, or to provide materials for your outreach needs, we’ve rounded up all the best free resources that we could find!

Infographics and Handouts:

Fun Outreach Items for Kids:

Template text to paste into outreach statements:

  • Report findings by calling 1-866-702-9938 or completing an online form at www.AsianLonghornedBeetle.com
  • (Your organization can help by encouraging the public to check / You can help by checking) trees for signs of the Asian longhorned beetle in August. Look for round exit holes, shallow scars in the bark, sawdust-like material on or around tree, and the beetle itself.

Past blogs and News Releases:

Social Media Tips:

Educational Videos:

General Information:

Highlights: States with Excellent Firewood Outreach

We want to recognize the excellent efforts shown by the following states- each of which provide great examples of consistency and thoroughness in their outreach on firewood and forest health!

An online outreach environment integrated across different state agencies and jurisdictions greatly increases the chance visitors will encounter important information on invasive species as they relate to forest health and the firewood pathway. This year we undertook the meticulous task of hunting through the internet in search of firewood outreach for every US state and territory across the following four key metrics: 1) state agency (non-parks) site, 2) cooperative extension site, 3) state lands/parks management site, and 4) recommendations found during the booking process for reserving a state parks campsite.

Out of the 50 US states and 5 territories, we’ve chosen some of the best online outreach examples among four states to highlight their excellent online firewood outreach. Easily accessible information as well as repetition and consistency work together to drive the message home that responsible firewood choices make a difference. Everyone has a part to play in the conservation of our natural resources! Below you’ll find some of the best firewood-focused pages as well as comments from some of the people hard at work in these states to spread the word on firewood and forest health.

Michigan

Check out the centralized page that Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has on firewood outreach: Firewood Facts: Buy It Where You Burn It . Several related pages were found that really lay out the rules and best practices for firewood use in the state including: Firewood Local Rules and Laws, Firewood Education and Outreach: Spread of Invasives, and Firewood Certification and Standards. These pages provide easy to read information in multiple locations, increasing the chance that the messages reach their intended audience.

“Michigan has a strong commitment to healthy forests and urban landscapes, and we’ve experienced the devastating impacts of invasive species on these important resources,” said Joanne Foreman, Michigan Department of Natural Resources invasive species communications coordinator. “Early adoption of the “Don’t Move Firewood” campaign, state support for an interagency invasive species program and collaboration with Michigan State University Extension assures coordination of our firewood outreach and policy efforts.”

Icon with embedded link to firewood rules page found with high visibility on general Michigan State Parks page.

 

South Carolina

South Carolina Forestry Commission has an informative centralized Forest Health: Don’t Move Firewood page promoting responsible firewood use and best practices, as well as clearly written resources on Clemson’s Department of Plant Industry regulatory services page, Firewood Movement. Together, these two pages reinforce South Carolina’s firewood messages.

“We believe that addressing forest pest issues, like the movement of infested firewood, is best achieved through education that happens early and often- and we are fortunate in South Carolina to have so many other agencies and organizations proactively communicating with the public” says Haley Ritger of Clemson University’s Department of Plant Industry. “These collaborative efforts mean that people who live, work, or recreate around South Carolina forests are consistently learning how they can protect our natural resources from forest pests.”

 

Banner add found at the top of SC Forestry Commission page on firewood.

 

Indiana

Indiana Department of Natural Resources has a centralized Firewood Rules page with clear and concise information on the firewood allowed on state lands. Links to this resource were found with complimentary imagery throughout related agency sites and pages, which increases the chance that visitors will find this resource without actively searching for it.

“Outreach is something we really concentrate on here in the Indiana DNR.” says Megan Abraham, the State Plant Regulatory Official in Indiana. “We have really great partners, including- our DNR staff (Parks and Forestry), agricultural extension in each of our 92 counties, our Purdue University Partners assisting us with Forest Pest Outreach and webinars like EAB University, and most importantly our landholders and members of the general public- and they are what makes us successful in discovering and managing the invasive species that Indiana has found within its borders.”

 

Firewood graphic with embedded link found on agency pest page in Indiana. We strongly recommend including firewood information and resources on all relevant pages.

 

Nebraska

Check out Nebraska’s Invasive Species Program page: Don’t Move Firewood! for some great ideas on how to highlight the firewood pathway. This is an excellent example of an invasive species program affiliated with a state university that gives firewood the attention it needs with clear firewood guidelines and plenty of resources for visitors to learn more. This page even has a DMF video!

 

NE also provides a great example of how to include firewood recommendations in a state with no regulations on the movement of firewood onto state lands. This tidbit is found with high visibility on the State Parks Camping page.

Firewood Month 2021 Partner Graphics Awards

We are excited to announce the Don’t Move Firewood campaign’s very first Firewood Month Partners Graphics Awards! We are so grateful for the amazing work our partners do to protect forests across North America, as well as the effort they put into amplifying the important messaging on best firewood practices. We were thrilled to see so many social media posts and e-newsletters sporting Don’t Move Firewood graphics, hashtags, and messaging. In addition to sharing our outreach materials, we saw many of you post your own awesome pictures, graphics, and infographics during the 2021 Firewood Month. And while they were all pretty great, we would like to highlight what we considered to be the best of the best!

So, without further ado…

The 2021 Partner Award: Best Firewood Month Infographic goes to Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources!
Shared by PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources on October 29, 2021 via Facebook and Twitter

 

The 2021 Partner Award: Most Compelling Firewood Month Visuals goes to BOTH Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry AND Minnesota Department of Agriculture
Image created by Minnesota Department of Agriculture and Shared, with permission, by Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry on October 7, 2021 via Facebook

 

The 2021 Partner Award: Best Pest Profile with Call to Action goes to Mississippi Bug Blues
Shared by Mississippi Bug Blues on October 25, 2021 via Facebook and Twitter

 

Finally, the 2021 Partner Honorable Mention: Best Firewood Month Turn of Phrase goes to Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service! This was posted during Firewood Month LAST year (2020), but we loved it so much we decided to give it an award anyway.
Shared by the Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service on October 19, 2020 via Facebook

 

Thank you to all our partners for sharing your important and creative content; these messages encourage best firewood practices, protect forests from harmful forest pests and diseases, and work together to create a comprehensive Firewood Month approach across the country. We would not have the impact we do without YOUR help and support. And remember, while Firewood Month 2021 may be over, your firewood choices matter all year long!