Honeybees are key pollinators that are absolutely crucial to our food system. And, tragically, they’re not having an easy time these days.
One factor responsible for a massive amount of honeybee deaths is a class of systemic pesticides called neonicotinoids. These chemicals are widely used to grow corn. The EPA identifies two specific neonicotinoids, imidacloprid and clothianidin, as highly toxic to bees. Both chemicals cause symptoms in bees such as memory loss, navigation disruption, paralysis and death.
Leaked memos from inside the Environmental Protection Agency show that even the EPA doubts the validity of studies showing the pesticide clothianidin is safe.
These pesticides are not only used to prop up an unsustainable, monoculture system of industrial agriculture, they’re also killing a lot of bees in the process. Other countries have already banned these pesticides, but so far the Unites States isn’t making the same move. It needs to.
Learn more about this important issue—plus read summaries of many recent research studies on bees and pesticides—in these two articles:
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