After two public meetings in Quincy last year on how to prepare for the emerald ash borer, the costs appear staggering to another community that is starting to deal with the invasive species.
Galesburg could spend more than $900,000 on ash tree removal and treatment through 2019. The Register-Mail reported that the bug will affect 600 trees lining streets and parks.
It is expected to take five years to remove the trees. Treatment and tree removal could continue beyond 2019.
In November, Jeff Palmer, a certified arborist with tree injection technology company Arborjet, told Quincy officials that treating trees can help stem removal costs. It costs about $60 per tree, and it has to be administered every two years.
A 2000 survey showed 1,042 ash trees on city-owned property in Quincy, representing 9 percent of the city’s 11,592 trees. While the emerald ash borer has not been discovered in the area, it is only a matter of time.
Native to Asia, the beetle was first discovered in Detroit in 2002. Millions of ash trees in the Midwest have been decimated by the bug. The insect was first discovered in Illinois in 2006, and ash trees in Chicago and the Bloomington/Normal area have been lost because of the destructive bug.