Twenty-years-ago on Monday, a firestorm erupted on Long Island’s East End. Flames leaped 200 feet into the sky.
Environmental groups are urging the state to step up the war on the insects before they wipe out thousands of additional trees.
One of the most destructive pests that have already ravaged forests in New Jersey are now threatening Long Island.
The insects, so small they fit on the tip of a fingernail, have badly damaged many trees in the Pine Barrens.
Pine trees are under attack from tiny beetles, smaller than grains of rice, that are invading by the thousands.
Environmentalists say they threaten the water supply and residents are deeply concerned, as the cars could catch fire or leak chemicals.
It took firefighters from more than 100 departments in Suffolk County two days to put out the fire that began on April 9 near the Brookhaven National Laboratory.
“The situation is contained for the time being,” Cuomo said, adding he was “cautiously optimistic.” The governor also stated that the response was an example of a case where “government acted better than you could have expected.”