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Old 07-17-2008, 06:54 AM   #1
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New York State Firewood Transportation Rules

New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) recently adopted a ban on transportation of firewood over distances greater than 50 miles. There are some invasive species of insects that are very destructive to certain types of trees, and they are trying to limit the spread of these bugs. To support this ban, they are requiring a "Self-Issued Certificate for Transportation and Possesion of New York-sourced Untreated Firewood for Personal Use." There are other regulations affecting firewood suppliers and bulk transporters, but this one is the one we campers need to know about.

First, there is an interesting and informative discussion of this topic over on the Fish Creek Ponds website forum: Fish Creek Ponds forum

Next, here is the NYS DEC info including links to a detailed FAQ and the required certificate: DEC Website

Initially, DEC was going to concentrate on educational means to spread the word and get the program going. We recently learned that some DEC campgrounds are checking for the required certificate and if not furnished, they are confiscating your firewood. Others are beginning to check for the certificates, but only informing about the potential for confiscation. Another source tells us that DEC will uniformly confiscate any non-certified firewood in 2009.

For those of you who are already aware of this and just need the blank forms for the transportation certificates: Self-Issued Certificate of Source (100 kb pdf) I downloaded the .pdf and have printed up several blanks to keep in the trailer.

Please understand that in New York State, this regulation can be enforced by any: DEC employee, NYS Parks employee, DEC police, NYS Police, and any other law enforcement officer. Realistically, I would expect that regular law enforcement won't get too involved with this except perhaps inside parks like the Adirondacks and Catskills.

Also, this rule is state-wide in scope and not limited to state operated campgrounds or parks. It can be enforced anywhere within the state.

I have no personal knowledge of what other states are doing in regard to this problem, but it would not surprise me if some of them have adopted similar rules. If any of you know anything about this for other states, please chime in here as we all need to be informed about this situation.


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Old 07-17-2008, 09:35 AM   #2
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I noticed that rule last year. One camp firewood seller near Sacandaga Campsite (DEC) told me loves the new rule. I wonder what the price of "Certified" wood will be in the near future. We may be all using those "fake" gas fired fire pits to cook our pretend dogs or s'mores. At least they're easy to put out for the night.

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Old 07-17-2008, 10:17 AM   #3
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Here's PA's regulations...

I understand the concern completely. The only hard part of swallowing this pill for me... it's the size of a tennis ball.

For those of us who log to save the cost on heat in the winter, 20-30 bucks charge for campfire wood for a weekend is absurd at a local stand. Heck that's more than the cost for me to cut, rack, haul, dump and split and rerack an entire cord as logging is mostly time and energy. In comparison, the wood Marshall burnt at the M&G weekend would easily range around 500 dollars if it was purchased in tiny packets from a campground or local stand. Personally, I've been in practice for while now(since the warnings 1st surfaced, probably 6-7 years ago) of inspecting and hand selecting every cut that goes into my vehicle for a camping weekend. A pleasant well kept campfire is an essential part of the whole camping experience for me. Maybe I'll pick up an old 27" TV, prop it up on the ring, and run a video feed of a fire to it.

If you are someone who cuts and carries wood, even within the distances dictated, please do what you can to know the signs of these pests, it really could be a huge problem in the future... and tell a friend about it too!

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Old 07-17-2008, 08:20 PM   #4
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If you really want to bet set back in your seat, poke around on the NY state site and look for the fines and IMPRISONMENT for violating these regulations.
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