Skip to main content

Dutch Elm Disease: Disease Control

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 280285, tabled on 22 July 2019

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps the Government is taking to (a) support local authorities managing and tackling elm disease and (b) ensure that Brighton and Hove City Council has adequate support to protect the National Elm Collection in the city.

Answered on

9 September 2019

Landowners are responsible for managing the trees on their land. All Local Authorities, including Brighton and Hove, have been provided with the legislative powers necessary to safeguard the nation’s elm population and prevent the spread of elm disease. These powers are set out in the Dutch Elm Disease (Local Authorities) Order 1984. They allow officers (appointed by the Local Authority) who suspect the presence of this disease to enter any land to inspect trees and take samples, and where disease is present, to take action to eradicate it. Government has a strong risk-based biosecurity response to reduce the pest and disease risk to trees involving comprehensive international and domestic surveillance, stringent border biosecurity, robust contingency plans and world leading research. Government invests over £30million per year on our plant health service.