The European Union will completely ban pesticides that harm bees and their crop pollination. (Photo by Eric Ward of Unsplash)

EU moves to full ban on pesticides that harm bees

  • Apr. 27, 2018 7:44 a.m.

BRUSSELS — The European Union made a key breakthrough on Friday to completely ban pesticides that harm bees and their crop pollination.

The 28 member states got a large majority, representing some three-quarters of its population, backing the ban on the three prevalent neonicotinoid pesticides which will take effect at the end of the year. The decision builds on a limited ban which has been in effect since 2013.

Antonia Staats of the Avaaz campaign group called it a “beacon of hope for bees. Finally our governments are listening.”

Over the past several years, there’s been an alarming drop in bee populations and there were fears it would start to seriously affect crop production since bees are necessary for the spread of pollen and reproduction.

The EU says it used a scientific review to identify pesticides as one of the factors causing the decline along with disease and climate change among others.

Swiss agribusiness company Syngenta called the decision “disappointing” and added that “evidence clearly shows that neonicotinoids pose a minimum threat to bee health compared to a lack of food, diseases and cold weather.”

Others disagree.

“There is abundant evidence from lab and field studies that neonicotinoids are harmful to bees, and a growing body of evidence linking them to declines of butterflies, aquatic insects and insect-eating birds,” said Dave Goulson, biology professor at the University of Sussex. “The EU decision is a logical one,” he said.

The European Commission is set to adopt the decision in the next few weeks and the ban will kick in by the end of the year.

The three pesticides will only be allowed for use in greenhouses where there is no contact with bees.

EU nations, environment groups and industry have been bickering over the issue for almost a decade now.

Just Posted

Red Deer church donates to Safe Harbour

It was all about helping those in need at Safe Harbour in… Continue reading

Former firefighter with PTSD sues Syncrude over suspended benefits, dismissal

CALGARY — A lawsuit filed by a former firefighter and paramedic against… Continue reading

Call for tighter bail rules after Saudi sex-crime suspect vanishes

HALIFAX — Mohammed Zuraibi Alzoabi may have hoped to quietly disappear from… Continue reading

Democrats aren’t buying Trump’s shutdown-ending ‘compromise’

WASHINGTON — In a bid to break the shutdown stalemate, President Donald… Continue reading

Updated: Red Deer welcomes 2019 Canada Winter Games Team Alberta

About 250 Alberta athletes are participating in the Games

Students seen mocking Native Americans could face expulsion

One 11-minute video of the confrontation shows the Haka dance and students loudly chanting

Curtain rising Sunday night on total lunar eclipse

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The celestial curtain will be rising soon on… Continue reading

At 30-day mark, shutdown logjam remains over border funding

WASHINGTON — Thirty days into the partial government shutdown, Democrats and Republicans… Continue reading

Holocaust victims buried after remains found in UK museum

LONDON — The remains of six unidentified Holocaust victims were buried in… Continue reading

Giuliani: ‘So what’ if Trump and Cohen discussed testimony

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani left open Sunday the… Continue reading

Photos: Rocks fly at 37th Annual Oilmen’s Bonspiel

Twenty-nine teams gathered at the Pidherney Curling Centre in Red Deer for… Continue reading

Death toll reaches 79 in Mexico fuel pipeline fire horror

TLAHUELILPAN, Mexico — People in the town where a gasoline explosion killed… Continue reading

With Trump out, Davos chief eyes fixing world architecture

DAVOS, Switzerland — The founder of the World Economic Forum says U.S.… Continue reading

Mexican pipeline explosion kills 71, leaves nightmare of ash

TLAHUELILPAN, Mexico — Gerardo Perez returned Saturday to the scorched field in… Continue reading

Most Read