Bumblebees are in trouble.
Baby bees that eat food contaminated with pesticides called neonicotinoids (or neonics) experience permanent and irreversible brain damage. This makes these bees poorer at learning, foraging and returning to the hive as young adults.1
The solution to protecting baby bees from this fate is simple: It’s time to ban the worst uses of neonics.
A new study found that young bees’ exposure to neonics caused parts of the brain to grow less. Later in life, these bees had impaired brain function, and experienced difficulty foraging for food and returning to the hive. The researchers also concluded that neonics are a leading cause of global bee declines.2
And this science is just the latest documenting neonics’ adverse impacts on bees. Previously, neonics were found to poison bees’ central nervous systems, altering behavior and increasing susceptibility to disease.3
Under federal law, the EPA is required to review all registered pesticides every 15 years to make sure they don’t cause unreasonable harm. This gives us the opportunity to show the EPA the science and urge it to respond with real protections for pollinators.
The EPA is currently accepting public input on the decision to reapprove neonics, and it’s obligated to review and consider comments. By adding your name, you’ll help build the necessary support to convince the EPA to protect pollinators from toxic pesticides.
Thank you for all you do,
P.S. Our work to defend the environment can’t stop and won’t stop in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. We’ll keep advocating on your behalf — at a safe social distance — for clean air, clean water, clean energy, wildlife and open spaces, and a livable climate.
1. Katie Hunt, “Pesticides damage the brains of baby bees, new research finds,” CNN, March 3, 2020.
2. Katie Hunt, “Pesticides damage the brains of baby bees, new research finds,” CNN, March 3, 2020.
3. “Harm,” The Task Force on Systemic Pesticides, last accessed February 12, 2020.
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