Lake County to be reimbursed for dead, damaged trees
Updated: August 31, 2012 3:08PM
DuPont will pay the Lake County Forest Preserve District more than $835,000 to compensate for trees either killed or damaged last year by use of Imprelis, one of the chemical company’s seasonal herbicides, at both the Brae Loch and Countryside golf courses.
Last August, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ordered DuPont to “immediately halt the sale, use or distribution of Imprelis, an herbicide marketed to control weeds, vines and certain grasses in recreational areas such as golf courses and commercial properties such as sod farms.”
The order came after an investigation into reports nationwide of evergreens and other trees being damaged following use of the herbicide. Forest preserve officials said Tuesday that Imprelis was used in the spring of 2011 on bluegrass fairways and roughs at the two district-owned courses.
“At that time, testing showed the herbicide as highly effective in controlling common broadleaf weeds, such as dandelion and clover,” district officials said in a statement. “Within a few weeks, district staff noticed unusual curling of new seasonal growth on trees at Countryside and Brae Loch. These symptoms also appeared on trees at other golf courses throughout the nation where Imprelis was used.
“In fall 2011, DuPont released a letter acknowledging issues with the chemical and offered a claims process. The district submitted a claim for the affected trees at the two courses.”
According to the district, both DuPont inspectors and an independent arborist determined that 113 trees would need to be removed, including 93 at Countryside near Mundelein and 20 at Brae Loch in Grayslake. Another 325 trees, 190 at Countryside and 135 at Brae Loch, were designated for a tree-care program.
The total settlement of $835,987, announced following approval Tuesday by the forest preserve’s Board of Commissioners, reportedly will compensate the district “for the cost of tree removal, the value of trees removed, maintenance for new trees, a tree-care program for remaining trees, and additional compensation for other related costs.”