Scientists Call for Global Ban on Bee-Killing Pesticides
CHANGE.ORG SEEKING 50,000 SIGNATURES ON PETITION
Despite continued support from the United States government for the manufacturers, scientists across the globe are calling for an international ban on the synthetic pesticides responsible for colony collapse disorder in bees.
The author of the latest study out of Harvard University bluntly stated that the time is now.
“The data, both ours and others, right now merits a global ban,” said Chensheng Li, lead scientist in the Harvard University study that confirmed neonicotinoid pesticides as a primary cause of CCD. “Our study clearly demonstrated that imidacloprid is responsible for causing CCD, and the survival of the control hives that we set up side-by-side to the pesticide-treated hives augments this conclusion.”
Ever since 2006, when SafeLawns first reported the connection between the pesticides used to kill grubs on lawns, as well as numerous other insects, the manufacturer, Bayer, has denied the connection. Since then numerous scientific studies have built to a unanimous conclusion that the substances — imadacloprid, clothianidin and others — are the cause of the disorder that has claimed more than a third of American beehives each year for the past six.
The pesticides make it impossible for the bees to navigate their way back to hives; the disoriented insects also forget to eat and, ultimately, perish.
In March, commercial beekeepers and environmental organizations filed a petition asking federal regulators to ban the clothianidin, the fastest acting of the many synthetic nicotines on the market. Prior to that a government document was revealed that proved that substance was approved based on false data.
More than 1.25 million people also submitted comments in partnership with the organizations, calling on the EPA to take action — yet nothing has been done.
In one positive move, that also amounts to an admission of guilt by Bayer, the company removed almonds from the pesticide label for imidacloprid in California, thereby eliminating the use of the product in that state’s numerous almond orchards. Some estimates claim that up to a third of the nation’s commercial beehives are sent to California each year to pollinate almonds.