Tree-killing beetle invades Columbus; 8,600 trees taken down
Ohio’s capital city is in a costly, multiyear battle against a tree-killing beetle.
Columbus is spending $10 million to remove most of an estimated 30,000 ash trees and replace them with other species. Many of the ashes line streets in public rights of way.
The city forester says $1.5 million will be spent this year on removing trees, with two full-time city crews focused on cutting down and chipping ash trees. Some residents have been unhappy to see trees taken down that look OK from the outside.
“We are removing trees that appear healthy, but they do have the insect,” said Joe Sulak, the city forester.
The city has removed some 8,600 so far.