The failure of the EPA to protect the environment — in this case, bees — jeopardizes beekeepers’ ability to continue in their work. Pollinator decline has become a worldwide issue, raising increasing concerns over impacts on global food production, stability of pollination services, and disruption of plant-pollinator networks, A leaked EPA memo, dated November 2, 2010, focuses on Bayer CropScience’s request to register (ie legalize) its pesticide clothianidin for use on mustard seed and cotton. Clothianidin was first registered in May 2003, but its registration was conditional on safety testing that the EPA said should be completed by December 2004. Only, as the latest memo points out, the study, when it was done (long after 2004), was inadequate in demonstrating that clothianidin does not pose a threat to honeybees. Unfortunately, with the EPA’s failure to ensure clothianidin’s safety before allowing its use on corn and canola, it fell to beekeepers to discover why their bees were dying, and how the EPA allowed clothianidin on the market.
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