Jonathan Schoenfeld | The Anti-Media
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According to a new study, two thirds of pollen collected by honey bees in Europe is contaminated with up to 17 different pesticides. These pesticides are toxic to many animals and even the honeybees themselves. Image credit: aussiegall
In addition to pesticide related chemicals there were also traces of insecticides, acaricides, fungicides and herbicides, produced by agrochemical companies like Bayer, Syngenta, Monsanto, and BASF. The study included more than 100 samples from 12 European countries. In total, 53 different chemicals were detected. This sampling is just a fraction of the pollen contamination throughout the rest of European and global agriculture.
Based on the recent findings, the authors of the study suggest the European Commission and policy-makers should:
- Extend the scope of restrictions already imposed on the use of certain pesticides harmful to bees, namely clothianidin, imidacloprid, thiamethoxam and fipronil, so that their use is completely banned.
- Fully ban all other pesticides harmful to bees and other pollinators (including chlorpyrifos, cypermethrin and deltamethrin).
- Set ambitious Europe-wide action plans to better assess pesticide impacts on pollinators and reduce their use.
- Encourage research and development of non-chemical alternatives to pest management and promote the widespread implementation of ecological farming practices on the ground.
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