Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Edinburgh, UK
    Posts
    223

    Default EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environmen...bee?CMP=twt_gu


    EU proposes to ban insecticides linked to bee decline

    Three neonicotinoids, the world's most widely used insecticides would be forbidden across the continent for two years

    Damian Carrington
    Guardian.co.uk, Thursday 31 January 2013 16.32 GMT

    Damian-on-bees--Bees-flys-007.jpg
    Three neonicotinoids would be forbidden from use on corn, oil seed rape,
    sunflowers and other crops across Europe for two years


    Insecticides linked to serious harm in bees could be banned from use on flowering crops in Europe as early as July, under proposals set out by the European commission on Thursday, branded "hugely significant" by environmentalists. The move marks remarkably rapid action after evidence has mounted in recent months that the pesticides are contributing to the decline in insects that pollinate a third of all food.

    Three neonicotinoids, the world's most widely used insecticides, which earn billions of pounds a year for their manufacturers, would be forbidden from use on corn, oil seed rape, sunflowers and other crops across the continent for two years.

    It was time for "swift and decisive action", said Tonio Borg, commissioner for health and consumer policy, who added that the proposals were "ambitious but proportionate".

    The proposals will enter EU law on 25 February if a majority of Europe's 27 member states vote in favour. France and the Netherlands are supportive but the UK and Germany are reported to be reluctant.

    "It's important that we take action based upon scientific evidence rather than making knee-jerk decisions that could have significant knock-on impacts," said the environment secretary, Owen Paterson. "That's why we are carrying out our own detailed field research to ensure we can make a decision about neonicotinoids based on the most up-to-date and complete evidence available."

    Luis Morago, at campaign group Avaaz which took an anti-neonicotinoid petition of 2.2m signatures to Brussels, said:

    This is the first time that the EU has recognised that the demise of bees has a perpetrator: pesticides. The suspension could mark a tipping point in the battle to stop the chemical armageddon for bees, but it does not go far enough. Over 2.2 million people want the European commission to face-down spurious German and British opposition and push for comprehensive ban of neonicotinoid pesticides."

    Keith Taylor, Green party MEP for South East England MEP, said:

    "For too long the threat to bees from neonicotinoids has been dismissed, minimised or ignored. It is, therefore, good to see the European commission finally waking up. Bees have enormous economic value as pollinators and are vital to farmers. Let us hope that we're not too late in halting the dramatic decline in their population."

    Scientific evidence has mounted rapidly since March 2012, when two high-profile studies found that bees consuming neonicotinoids suffered an 85% loss in the number of queens their nests produced and showed a doubling in "disappeared" bees who got lost while foraging. Neonicotinoids have been fiercely defended by their manufacturers, who claim there is no proof of harm in field conditions and by farming lobbies who say crop yields could fall without pesticide protection.

    Some neonicotinoid uses have been banned in the past in France, Italy, Slovenia and Germany, but no action has yet been taken in the UK. A parliamentary committee is currently investigating the impact of neonicotinoids on all pollinators and found evidence raising "serious questions about the integrity, transparency and effectiveness of EU pesticides regulation".

    On 16 January, the European Food Safety Authority, official advisers to the EC, labelled the three neonicotinoids "an unacceptable danger to bees feeding on flowering crops and this prompted the proposal produced on Thursday.

    If approved by experts from member states on 25 February, it would suspend the use imidacloprid and clothianidin, made by Bayer, and thiamethoxam, made by Syngenta, on crops that attract bees. Winter cereals would be excluded, because bees are not active at that time, and the suspension would be reviewed after two years.

    The European commission is also considering banning gardeners from using these neonicotinoids, although B&Q, Homebase and Wickes have already withdrawn such products from their garden centres in the UK.

    "This hugely significant proposal promises a first, important step on the road to turning around the decline on our bees," said Friends of the Earth's head of campaigns Andrew Pendleton. "The UK government must throw its weight behind it. The evidence linking neonicotinoid chemicals to declining bee populations is growing. It is time to put farmers and nature before pesticide company profits. Ministers must act quickly to support safe and effective alternatives to chemical insecticides."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Fingers crossed the ban gets up, this would make the EU one huge test subject. If the bees rebound strongly then we can conclude that Neonics were the problem if not then we know we need to look further into this issue......

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    2,682

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    They were already banned in some countries over there, and most have not seen any improvements (depending on who u talk to), but maybe that's just makes the case of how stable they are.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Volga, SD
    Posts
    2,790

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Still strikes me as odd that growers would continue to need to apply them if they are as stable as has been alleged at times. Maybe they are, but I wonder just how long they really persist.

    I've often wondered, too, if beekeepers in tobacco-growing areas have noticed the sorts of losses that are attributed to neonicotinoids now. Neonicotinoids are man-made variants of nicotine, and, to the best of my knowledge, affect insect neural pathways in the same way that naturally-occurring nicotine does.

    I expect that we won't see much difference in bee losses if neonicotinoid use is suspended in the EU. I think degradation of floral diversity in most ecosystems and the cocktail of chemical pollutants from all sorts of sources are more significant factors than neonicotinoids. Maybe my thoughts will be disproven if the EU goes through with this action.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    that's the big problem, they are so persistent in the environment, I hope two years is enough to show something, but I doubt it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Volga, SD
    Posts
    2,790

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    They don't last long in protecting plants against aphids. I suppose trace amounts may last quite awhile, but I haven't seen anything to convince me that neonicotinoids are so stable in the environment that they will persist very long.

    Of course, neonicotinoids have been removed from the market for some of these applications in some EU countries for a few years now. I would expect to see some rebound effects soon (maybe already should have seen some) if this sort of limitation of application will work as well as is hoped.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,744

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Are we seeing levels of pesticides in our pollen now?

    I had a university student take samples of my pollen from my operation during my flow. They were looking for levels of lead,
    They also looked for traces of other metals and pesticides in the pollen. I forget how deep they looked, ppm for sure,

    I had absolutely no levels of pesticides in my pollen, I did have lead however.
    It was found that the pollen traps galvanized screening caused the high levels of lead . . . .

    this persistence of pesticides in the environment is a myth
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    1,973

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    ...It was found that the pollen traps galvanized screening caused the high levels of lead . . . .
    I thought things were galvanized with zinc. Where's the lead coming from?

    Adam

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Possibly the lead is added to the zinc to lower the melting point a touch or maybe it's just a trace impurity?

    As for neonics in pollen that has been found to occur (paper is cited in one of the other neonic threads). That same paper also found some evidence (IIRC) for their persistence in the field, not at functional (as required for desired effect) levels, ppb levels?, but they were still there. As to duration of persistence I would expect that to be highly variable based on soil type, chemistry, and temperature etc would all play a large role in this.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,744

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Foster Collins View Post
    I thought things were galvanized with zinc. Where's the lead coming from?

    Adam
    If your trapping pollen, Id use Stainless Steel screens
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,632

    Default Re: EU proposes to ban Nicotinoids linked to bee decline

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Foster Collins View Post
    I thought things were galvanized with zinc. Where's the lead coming from?
    Galvanizing is indeed coating steel with zinc, however:
    Lead is often added to the molten zinc bath to improve the fluidity of the bath (thus limiting excess zinc on the dipped product by improved drainage properties), helps prevent floating dross, makes dross recyclingeasier and protects the kettle from uneven heat distribution from the burners.[2] Lead is either added to primary Z1 Grade Zinc or already contained in used secondary zinc. A third, declining method is to use low Z5 Grade Zinc.[3]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hot-dip_galvanization
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads