Cheaper firewood at campgrounds could stop spread of bugs: Study

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Cutting the price of firewood at campgrounds could help curb the spread of invasive insects, a new Canadian study says.

Researchers at the University of Guelph in Ontario polled campers and discovered the main reason they bring firewood from home is the cost.

In Ontario provincial parks, firewood costs $6.75 per bundle, compared to $5 at roadside stands.

Study author Lee-Ann Barlow said if parks lowered the price of firewood to $4.25, it would stop many people from bringing firewood in from other places.

The emerald ash borer and the Asian long-horned beetle, for example, have infested Ontario trees in recent years.

"The reality is that these insects can only travel so far on their own, and they rely on human behaviour to spread further," Barlow said.

In 2013, the federal government spent $17.6 million to fight the bugs.

"Considering this cost, a slight decrease in the cost of firewood would be a wise investment," she said.