Why Andrew Cuomo’s Pollinator Task Force Won’t Save New York’s Bees

Independent Science News has just published Why Andrew Cuomo’s Pollinator Task Force Won’t Save New York’s Bees, a firsthand investigative report by Tracy Frisch.

Synopsis: Beekeepers across North America have been experiencing unsustainable losses of honeybee colonies from Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). In 2014-15, annual colony losses in New York State reached 54 per cent, according to the Bee Informed Partnership survey. These problems of managed bees are probably connected to a general decline in pollinator species being experienced all over the globe. Unless halted, the decline of pollinators heralds an ecological and agricultural crisis of unimaginable proportions.

Despite its seriousness, the US Federal Government has passed much of the responsibility for solutions to individual states. In particular, it has asked states to create their own “Pollinator Protection Plans.” This buck-passing is not producing promising results, however, as Tracy Frisch’s report on NY Governor Cuomo’s Pollinator Task Force shows. Mostly advised by industry representatives, NY’s Task Force ignores the impressive worldwide body of scientific evidence that implicates neonicotinoid insecticides as a major contributor to the decline of honeybee and wild bee populations (e.g. Lu et al., 2014).

Unless outside pressure (e.g. from the public, NGOs, beekeepers and scientists) can force Governor Cuomo and his Pollinator Task Force to ban neonicotinoids, and other implicated pesticides and herbicides, the decline in pollinators will continue.

To read the entire article by Tracy Frisch go to: http://www.independentsciencenews.org/environment/why-andrew-cuomos-pollinator-task-force-wont-save-new-yorks-bees/.

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