There is an invasive pest called the Emerald Ash Borer Beetle (EAB) that is killing ash trees across the country. It is a very serious threat and, over time, could kill most ash trees in North America if a cure/remedy is not discovered.
The EAB has been spotted in 13 states so far and is normally spread by the transport of undried firewood from county to county. There are some natural parasites that attack the EAB larva and are being cultivated in hopes that this can reduce the spread of the EAB, and the USDA is working to develop EAB-resistant strains of ash. It is unknown whether either of these remedies will be developed in time to stem the spread of the EAB.
The near term effect is actually a surplus of ash lumber. Many land-owners are harvesting their ash trees more aggressively then they otherwise would, in anticipation that the trees may become infected by the EAB and die before harvesting. Over time this effect will switch and ash lumber will become more scarce. No one knows, however, the time frame over which the availability of ash lumber will start to decline. It could be five years, or it could be twenty-five years (or longer).
In anticipation of a possible future disruption in supply of ash, Thermory is being proactive and is developing sources of ash raw material in Europe. European ash is available throughout Western and Eastern Europe and is identical to North American ash, but the European forests are untouched by the EAB. Thermory is already using some European ash in certain specifications for the European market, and we are ready to expand the use of European ash, if needed.