by Anthony Gucciardi
May 12, 2013
Corporate politics is business as usual
inside the United States, as I am once again shocked to report the
has sided with industry lobbyists over public health in
highly dangerous pesticide that
the European Union recently decided
to ban over fears of environmental devastation.
Not only have neonicotinoid pesticides
been linked repeatedly to mass bee deaths, also known as Colony
Collapse Disorder (CCD),
but the continued use of such pesticides threatens other aspects of
nature (and humans) as well.
What’s even more amazing is that the
decision not only comes after the EU
discussed the major dangers surrounding the use of the
pesticides, but after the USDA released a report surrounding the
continued honeybee deaths and the related effects - a report in
which they detailed pesticides to be a contributing factor.
Just the impact on the honeybees alone,
and we now know that these pesticides are
killing aquatic life and subsequently the birds that feed upon
them, amounts to a potential
$200 billion in global damages per year.
We’re talking about the
devastation of over 100 crops, from
apples to avocados and plums.
And there’s countless scientists and a
large number of environmental science groups speaking out on this.
The EPA has no lack of information
the subject. And sure, there are other contributing factors to bee
deaths, there’s no question about that.
We have an environment right now being
hit with Monsanto’s Roundup even in residential areas, we have
chemical rain, we have insane amounts of EMF - but it’s pretty clear
that neonicotinoid pesticides are at least a major contributing
factor. And beyond that, they have no place in the food supply to
The Pesticide Action Network (PAN)
details the EU ban that came right before the EPA acceptance of the
“The EU vote comes after significant
findings by the European Food Safety Agency that these
pesticides pose an unacceptable risk to bees and their use
should be restricted.
Along with habitat loss and pathogens, a
growing body of science points to neonicotinoid pesticides as a
key factor in drastically declining bee populations.”
So why are they approving this pesticide
to now pollute the United States in what potentially amounts to an
even larger capacity than the EU? A move that will ultimately
escalate the price of food worldwide due to the likely nature of
continued bee deaths and subsequent crop impact?
That’s the power of phony corporate
U.S. Approves New Pesticides Linked to...
Mass Bee Deaths
EU Enacts Ban
May 11, 2013
In the wake of a massive US Department of Agriculture report
highlighting the continuing large-scale death of honeybees,
environmental groups are left wondering why the Environmental
Protection Agency has decided to approve a "highly toxic" new
The continuing mass death of honeybees, known scientifically as
Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)
and a “pollinator crisis,” could well strain production of over 100
crops in the US including apples, zucchinis, avocados and plums.
The agriculture value of these products
is estimated at over $200 billion globally per year.
As RT recently reported, a new USDA report has taken a broad look at
the decline of bee colonies in the country, highlighting a dire
situation as the number of colonies has plummeted from 3 million in
1990 to 2.5 million this year. Demonstrating that the decline is a
long-term issue, that same report points to the existence of 6
million honey bee colonies in 1947.
Though dire, the report does not offer any immediate solutions, as
scientists continue to examine the potential causes for the mass
colony collapses, during which adult bees abandon their hives, along
with the queen, brood and food supplies.
The USDA cites,
“multiple factors… including
parasites and disease, genetics, poor nutrition and pesticide
exposure,” while also citing last summer’s drought as a
Many environmental groups seem convinced
that pesticides are a main factor in the continuing colony collapse
Beyond Pesticides, has called the
EPA’s recent green light for use of a new insecticide known as
sulfoxaflor irresponsible in light of its “highly toxic”
classification for honey bees.
In late April, the European Union voted to enact a two-year
moratorium on the use of
neonicotinoid pesticides (sulfoxaflor
is considered by many to be a "fourth-generation neonicotinoid") in
light of scientific studies that indicate their harm to bees.
As in the US, a number of European countries have also been
monitoring declining health and colony collapses in their bee
Groups such as the Pesticide Action
have praised the continent-wide ban.
“The EU vote comes after significant findings by the European
Food Safety Agency that these pesticides pose an unacceptable
risk to bees and their use should be restricted.
Along with habitat loss and
pathogens, a growing body of science points to neonicotinoid
pesticides as a key factor in drastically declining bee
populations,” said a statement by PAN.
Meanwhile, major pesticide manufacturers
scoff at the two-year European ban.
“As a science-based company, Bayer
CropScience is disappointed that clear scientific evidence has
taken a backseat in the decision-making process.
This disproportionate decision is a
missed opportunity to reach a solution that takes into
consideration all of the existing product-stewardship measures
and broad stakeholder concerns.”
Unlike the straight-cut decision taken
by the EU, the same USDA report highlighting plummeting bee colony
numbers in the US seems to undermine the possibility of even a
temporary ban on potentially harmful pesticides.
According to one veteran environmental reporter, Bryan Walsh
of Time Magazine, the USDA report in introducing several “potential”
factors in CCD skirts the issue of pesticides altogether.
“The USDA report mostly withholds
judgment on neonicotinoids, citing the need for more research,
and the Environmental Protection Agency is conducting a very
slow review of the evidence,” says Walsh.
The review cited by the agency is slated
to take an additional five years. Meanwhile, the domesticated bee
population in the US has reached a 50-year low.
According to Walsh, in a normal year the commercial bee industry
would expect to lose 10 to 15 per cent of its colonies, but over the
past five years mortality rates have increased dramatically, ranging
from 28 to 33 per cent.
Unlike in the EU, where at least in terms of policy lawmakers were
not willing to take a chance on pesticides, the USDA’s report points
to various possible causes for the massive colony collapse,
a parasitic mite called
a bacterial disease called
the use of pesticides, including
neonicotinoids, a neuroactive chemical
Yet, almost paradoxically, the USDA
seems to lend further study a time frame which seems glacial
compared to its own dire estimates of mass bee die offs.
“Currently, the survivorship of
honeybee colonies is too low for us to be confident in our
ability to meet the pollination demands of US agricultural
crops,” the USDA report said.