Alberta's mountain pine beetle control program has proven successful in slowing the spread of the destructive pest in the province's forests. The mountain pine beetle, known as the most harmful pine insect pest in Alberta, has witnessed a remarkable 98% decline in population since its peak in 2019, thanks to the combined efforts of cold winters and Alberta's robust control program.The mountain pine beetle poses a significant threat to Alberta's forested lands, and the province has been actively managing the situation for more than 15 years. The primary goals are to mitigate wildfire risks, minimize negative impacts on the forest industry, protect watersheds and safeguard endangered species. The success achieved thus far underscores the importance of continued investment in the mountain pine beetle control program."The mountain pine beetle is a significant threat to our province’s forested lands and we are working hard to protect the health of our forests and the livelihoods of thousands of Albertans. I am proud of the progress we have made in controlling the spread of mountain pine beetles throughout Alberta," said Todd Loewen, Minister of Forestry and Parks.The management measures employed by Alberta include population monitoring, risk assessments, the removal and burning of infested trees, and the harvesting of highly vulnerable pine. The mountain pine beetle carries a blue-stain fungi that damages the conductive tissue of affected trees when the beetle burrows in to feed and take cover.Alberta boasts 5.5 million hectares of pine susceptible to mountain pine beetle infestation, with an estimated value exceeding $11 billion.