Firewood from Colorado to California?

Dear Don't Move Firewood,

Can I bring Aspen firewood to California?  All the firewood was cut from dead Aspen trees in (not Boulder county) Colorado. If I can, do I need a letter showing authorization?

Yours, Concerned Coloradoan


Dear Concerned Coloradoan,

It is not a good idea to take Aspen firewood, or any firewood, from your land in Colorado to California. If you lived in Boulder County, it would be illegal due to the presence of the emerald ash borer federal quarantine. However, you don't- so while it is not strictly speaking illegal- it is not a good idea and poses a real risk to the trees of California. You don't need a letter, but you also shouldn't be doing it in the first place.

It is entirely possible that insects native to Colorado but not otherwise found in California could emerge and infest the trees in and around your destination in Colorado, causing problems for years to come. For instance, scientists around the West are concerned about Aspen decline, which is very poorly understood and kills aspen trees. You would not want to be the person that introduces this tree issue into the state of California! I suggest you use the Aspen firewood at or near your home in Colorado, and either cut or purchase firewood in California near where you will use it in that state.

I also posed this question to my colleagues in California and they agreed- it would be highly preferred if you made the choice to not move firewood into California from Colorado. Just because it isn't illegal, strictly speaking, does not mean it is something without significant risk to tree health.



Don't Move Firewood team


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