The situation surrounding Chalara is changing every day. The best source of information is: http://www.forestry.gov.uk/chalara
At the time of writing 14 sites have been confirmed in Scotland. These are:
Private nursery North East New Planting
Near Glendevon (new) New Planting
Near Blairgowrie New Planting
Near Carrbridge New Planting
Near Castle Douglas (FCS) New Planting
Near Cowdenbeath (new) New Planting
Near East Kilbride New Planting
Near Kilmacolm (FCS) New Planting
Near Leadhills New Planting
Near Lesmahagow (FCS) New Planting
Near Montrose New Planting
Near Scone Wider Environment
Near Eyemouth Wider Environment
Near Kinghorn (new)
Andrew Midgley, Scottish Land & Estates, Senior Policy Officer attended a summit meeting held by Paul Wheelhouse MSP, Minister for the Environment on 13 November to provide stakeholders with an update on action. As a result of that meeting it was agreed to:
- Provide advice on management of mature infected ash trees
- Identify mature ash that are resistant to the disease and could be used to propagate and develop new strains of ash to restock Scottish woodlands.
- Investigate woodland management and forestry techniques that could help slow down the spread of the disease and lessen its impact.
- Identify isolated locations around Scotland that are protected from windborne spread of spores and use them as a refuge for ash in Scotland.
- Develop a feasible, practical, achievable and affordable approach to dealing with infected young ash on newly planted sites
- Continue to survey in towns, cities and in the countryside surrounding infected sites.
The expectation is that by the end of November there will be a GB control plan for Chalara. The Forestry Commission are working at present to contain the disease as much as possible and are not requiring affected owners to destroy trees immediately whilst it gains a better understanding of the situation and assesses the best course of action.
Forestry Commission staff are working on the issue of covering the costs incurred by owners affected by the disease. The precedent has been set where costs have been covered in relation to Phytophthora, but they need to examine a range of financial issues relating to grant schemes and budgets.