Canada to phase out most uses of 2 pesticides . . . .

Canada to phase out most uses of 2 pesticides . . . .

Postby Oscar » Sun Aug 26, 2018 4:45 pm

Canada to phase out most uses of pesticides linked to bee deaths

[ https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/ ... deaths-of/ ]

Eric Atkins Published August 15, 2018 Updated August 15, 2018

The Canadian government plans to phase out most uses of two pesticides linked to the deaths of bees and other insects, a move environmental groups say is welcome but should be implemented immediately.

Health Canada said on Wednesday it will ban most outdoor uses of clothianidin and thiamethoxam over three to five years because “harmful levels” of the chemicals in rivers and streams are also affecting mayflies, midges and other aquatic insects, an important food source for fish and birds.

Scott Kirby, director-general of Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA), said the phase-out will begin after a consultation period next year. He said most uses of the chemicals will end within the three-year period but added that the longer time frame is needed so growers can find replacements.

Environmental groups and critics of the PMRA called it a significant step in the effort to protect bees and other pollinators, but said the ban should be in place sooner.

Ottawa previously announced a phase-out of a related product, imidacloprid, and all three pesticides facing a ban are in a class known as neonicotinoids, widely used to grow canola, soybeans and other field crops as well as sod, ornamental flowers and vegetables.

The insecticides are systemic, which means they become part of the plant and render it toxic to bees and other insects. Studies have shown the neurotoxins affect bees’ ability to find food and maintain healthy, productive colonies. The products are slow to break down in the soil and can wash into water bodies.

Tibor Szabo, who raises and sells queen bees in Guelph, Ont., and sits on the board of the Ontario Beekeepers’ Association, said the proposed ban comes too late for beekeepers who have lost hives and struggled to stay in business.

“These things should never have been conditionally registered without any risk assessments done on bees,” he said. “That was a complete rip-off of the taxpayer. It killed so many pollinators in the past 10 years that there is no way they will ever be replaced – the genetic diversity that has been lost is permanent.”

He said chemical companies are constantly developing and marketing new systemic pesticides that are just as lethal to insects as the ones being banned, touching off years of testing processes in which bees and other pollinators are threatened.

“If they pull these ones, what the hell are they doing about all the other ones that have popped out on the market in the past few years?” he said.

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Re: Canada to phase out most uses of 2 pesticides . . . .

Postby Oscar » Sun Aug 26, 2018 4:54 pm

EU member states support near-total neonicotinoids ban

[ https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-envi ... 36?SThisFB ]

By Matt McGrath Environment correspondent 27 April 2018

(Media caption Campaigners in Brussels celebrate the new ban)

Member states have voted in favour of an almost complete ban on the use of neonicotinoid insecticides across the EU.

Scientific studies have long linked their use to the decline of honeybees, wild bees and other pollinators.

The move represents a major extension of existing restrictions, in place since 2013.

Manufacturers and some farming groups have opposed the move, saying the science remains uncertain.

Neonicotinoids are the most widely used class of insecticides in the world, but concerns about their impact on bees have been reinforced by multiple research efforts, including so-called "real world" trial results published last year.

Change of heart


Back in 2013 the European Union opted for a partial ban on the use of the three chemicals in this class: Imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiamethoxam.

The restrictions applied to crops including maize, wheat, barley, oats and oil seed rape. The newly agreed Commission regulation goes much further, meaning that almost all outdoor uses of the chemicals would be banned.

Voting on the proposal had been postponed a number of times as countries were split on the move. However, Friday's meeting saw a qualified majority vote in favour of the ban.

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= = = =

STUDY: Country-specific effects of neonicotinoid pesticides on honey bees and wild bees

[ http://science.sciencemag.org/content/356/6345/1393 ]

B. A. Woodcock1,*, J. M. Bullock1, R. F. Shore2, M. S. Heard1, M. G. Pereira2, J. Redhead1, L. Ridding1, H. Dean1, D. Sleep2, P. Henrys2, J. Peyton1, S. Hulmes1, L. Hulmes1, M. Sárospataki3, C. Saure4, M. Edwards5, E. Genersch6, S. Knäbe7, R. F. Pywell1
+ See all authors and affiliations

Science 30 Jun 2017: Vol. 356, Issue 6345, pp. 1393-1395 DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa1190

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