Home Depot to phase out Neonicotinoid Clothianidin responsible for 80% of U.S. Bee decline
In addition to Home Depot , be aware that “51% of garden plants purchased at Lowe’s (NYSE: LOW), Home Depot (NYSE: HD) and Walmart (NYSE: WMT) in 18 cities in the United States and Canada contained neonicotinoid pesticides at levels that could harm or even kill bees. Following the release of this report, Home Depot announced it would require its suppliers to label all plants treated with neonicotinoid pesticides, which have been shown to harm and kill bees, by the fourth quarter of 2014. It also committed to “find alternative insecticides for protecting live goods and bees.” (study released by Friends of the Earth and Pesticide Research Institute, Gardeners Beware 2014)
History of Nionicitinoids
The proof is in and folks, it’s not pretty. From 2012 to 2013 nearly 80% of bees are either not returning to there hives, or they have simply died. The reports are coming in from beekeepers and pollinators all over the country, that the Bees are dying off at alarming rates.On July 12, 2013, Rep. John Conyers, on behalf of himself and Rep. Earl Blumenauer, introduced the “Save American Pollinators Act” in the House of Representatives. The Act called for suspension of the use of four neonicotinoids, including the three recently suspended by the European Union, until their review is complete, and for a joint Interior Department and EPA study of bee populations and the possible reasons for their decline. The bill was assigned to a congressional committee on July 16, 2013 and did not leave committee.
The Truth about Neonicotinoids
- TRUE: Neonicotinoids have been used In the U.S. on about 95 percent of corn and canola crops, the majority of cotton, sorghum, and sugar beets and about half of all soybeans. They have been used on the vast majority of fruit and vegetables, including apples, cherries, peaches, oranges, berries, leafy greens, tomatoes, and potatoes, to cereal grains, rice, nuts, and wine grapes.
- TRUE: As all neonicotinoids were registered after 1984, they were not subject to re- registration, but due to environmental concerns, especially concerning bees, the EPA opened dockets to evaluate them.EPA Last updated on April 17, 2014. The registration review docket for imidacloprid+opened in December 2008, and the docket for nithiazine+ opened in March 2009. To best take advantage of new research as it becomes available, the EPA moved ahead the docket openings for the remaining neonicotinoids on the registration review schedule (acetamiprid+, clothianidin+, dinotefuran+,thiacloprid+, andthiamethoxam+) to FY 2012. The EPA has said that it expects to complete the review for the neonicotinoids in 2018.
- TRUE: In 2008, Germany revoked the registration of clothianidin for use on seed corn after an incident that resulted in the death of millions of nearby honey bees.
- TRUE: Neonicotinoids may be responsible for detrimental effects on bumble bee+ colony growth and queen production.
- FALSE: Neonicotinoids are responsible for killing of the bees only, and do not effect other insects.
- TRUE: In March 2013, the American Bird Conservancy+ published a commentary on 200 studies on neonicotinoids calling for a ban on neonicotinoid use as seed treatments because of their toxicity to birds, aquatic invertebrates+, and other wildlife.
- TRUE: From June to October 2014 a comprehensive Worldwide Integrated Assessment of the impact of Systemic Pesticides on biodiversity and ecosystems (WIA) was published in the journal Environmental Science and Pollution Research. In a series of papers it concludes that these systemic insecticides pose a serious risk of harm to a broad range of non-target invertebrate taxa often below the expected environmental concentrations.
- TRUE:In April 2015 EASAC+ conducted a study of the potential effects on organisms providing a range of ecosystem services like pollination and natural pest control which are critical to sustainable agriculture+. The resulting report concludes “there is an increasing body of evidence that the widespread prophylactic use of neonicotinoids has severe negative effects on non-target organisms that provide ecosystem services including pollination and natural pest control.” Two studies published in ”Nature”+ provided further evidence of the deleterious effect of neonicontinoids on bees, although the further research is needed to corroborate the findings: Oilseed rape seed coated with a combination of clothianidin and a pyrethroid “reduced wild bee density, solitary bee nesting, and bumblebee colony growth and reproduction under field conditions”. In a feeding experiment, bees preferred sucrose solutions with imidacloprid or thiamethoxam, even though it “caused them to eat less food overall”.
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What can you do to help???
Call on Home Depot and Lowe’s to get rid of the bee-killing neonics.
A group of activists named SumOfUs have been right in front of the issue on the front lines of a global campaign to save our bees. They came together to fight Bayer at a huge independent garden store show in Chicago, where the German chemical maker was out in force. They have even taken legal action in Europe to defend the EU’s ban against Bayer, and just last week they spoke out at Bayer’s annual shareholder meeting in Germany. But to win this fight, they need the public’s assist as well a big push to urge retailers to drop these bee-killing pesticides now.
According to the group:
UPDATE 23 April 2015: “Lowe’s just promised to phase out the sale of bee-killing pesticides, after members of SumOfUs and Friends of the Earth took action, visited stores, and made their voices heard. “
Bees are dying off around the world in record numbers — but big retailers are still selling the poison that is killing them.
Last season, 37 million bees (!) died on a single North American farm. Scientists now know why – study after study shows that deadly pesticides called “neonics”, manufactured by Bayer, are killing them.”