It really does upset me that this beautiful country that I live in (N.Z.) is so backward when it comes to environmental and animal welfare issues.
Recently I read an article about the neonicotinoid pesticides having such a devastating effect on bees and how in June 2014 a team at Harvard announced that when hives were treated with neonicotinoids, half of them collapsed.
Back around July 2013, after evidence against neonicotinoids had begun to accumulate, the EU had moved to ban three neonicotinoids from use on cereals and flowering crops attractive to bees which came into effect in December 2013.
US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently issued a report saying that there is a connection to the health of the honey bees saying “pesticides may be part of the problem, including both the pyrethroid and neonicotinoid classes of pesticides”. But their recommendations are more about best management practices and technical advancements for applying pesticides to reduce dust, etc. than about the actual threat or banning them.
New Zealand just loves to follow USA and again our “clean, green” image comes into some question as once more the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), which has the authority, has not even begun to investigate this new research …… but then New Zealand is known for dragging the chain when it comes to banning pesticides along with other environmental and animal issues.
I wonder what Sir Edmund Hillary – our famous bee keeper mountaineer would say about this.
By the way, I applaud the EU for making this move even if it is on a “trial” basis for 2 years. They did this in the face of intense lobbying and interference by Bayer and Syngenta who make and sell the chemicals.