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New USDA report on honey bee losses to be released this week

Harvard study points to pesticide exposures as key contributor

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week the USDA is set to release its annual report on honey bee overwintering losses, which are expected to be significant due to several contributing factors, including exposure to neonicotinoid pesticides. This class of pesticides was identified as a key factor in bee declines by a Harvard study released last week. The European Union has banned the three most widely…

Congressional hearing on bee health stacked against science

WASHINGTON, D.C.– The Congressional subcommittee hearing on pollinator health, held today, failed to include a robust science-based discussion about the impacts of neonicotinoid pesticides on bees.

Pesticide manufacturer Bayer (DE:BAYN) testified at the hearing for the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology and Foreign Agriculture. But the panel included no independent scientists  on the leading edge of bee research and no large, commercial beekeepers who are experiencing firsthand the dire losses of bees which…

Follow the Honey: 7 ways pesticide companies are spinning the bee crisis to protect profits
Follow the Honey: 7 ways pesticide companies are spinning the bee crisis to protect profits

By Michele Simon

If you like to eat, then you should care about what’s happening to bees. Did you know that two-thirds of our food crops require pollination -- the very foods that we rely on for healthy eating -- such as apples, berries, and almonds, just to name a few. That’s why the serious declines in bee populations are getting more attention, with entire campaigns devoted to saving bees.

A strong and…

Pesticide pushers spin the bee crisis to protect profits

New report reveals Big Tobacco PR tactics used by Bayer, Syngenta, Monsanto

SAN FRANCISCO – On the eve of Bayer’s (DE: BAYN) Annual Stockholders’ Meeting in Germany, author Michele Simon and environmental group Friends of the Earth released a new report documenting the tactics used by Bayer and other pesticide companies to delay regulatory action on neonicotinoid (neonic) pesticides -- a key contributor to bee declines.

The European Union banned the three most widely…

More than a half million people demand Home Depot and Lowes stop selling bee-killing pesticides

Thousands participate in bee swarm actions across the country in the week of Valentine's Day

WASHINGTON, D.C.—This week, over 27,000 people coast-to-coast are swarming Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW) and Home Depot (NYSE:HD) stores to support the bees that pollinate our flowers for Valentine’s Day. In a coalition effort called the Bee Week of Action, Friends of the Earth and allies are delivering more than half a million petition signatures and Valentines asking these retailers to “show bees…

Gardeners beware: “Bee-friendly” plants may be poisoning your garden
Gardeners beware: “Bee-friendly” plants may be poisoning your garden

You may have heard that bees are key pollinators for one out of every three bites of food we eat. You may also know that bees are in grave trouble – as the recent Time magazine cover story pointed out. But did you know that your own garden plants may be poisoning these bees?

A new report by Friends of the Earth US and Pesticide Research Institute found 54 percent of common garden plants…

Bee die-offs: New tests find bee-killing pesticides in ‘bee-friendly’ plants from garden centers nationwide

175,000 people demand Lowe’s, Home Depot stop selling “pre-poisoned plants”

SAN FRANCISCO – Many “bee friendly” home garden plants sold at Home Depot (NYSE: HD), Lowe’s (NYSE: LOW) and other leading garden centers have been pre-treated with pesticides shown to harm and kill bees, according to a new, first-of-its-kind pilot study released today by Friends of the Earth and allies.

The pilot study, co-authored by the Pesticide Research Institute, found that 7 of 13…

Sinister partners: transatlantic trade agreement & toxic chemicals
Sinister partners: transatlantic trade agreement & toxic chemicals

Chemicals are the sinister and little-recognized partners of radiation in changing the very nature of the world–the very nature of life.

 – Rachel Carson.

On July 8, in Washington, D.C., trade negotiators from the United States and the European Union are expected to open the first round of talks for a Trans Atlantic free trade agreement (TAFTA) or as it is formally known, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).  The United States…

Worst bee die-off in 40 years

Updated May 2013: Take action here to tell Home Depot, Lowe's and other stores not to carry products containing bee-killing neonicotinoids.

Spring is in the air, and as we plant our vegetable gardens and enjoy the blossoming flowers, it’s easy to forget the small creatures that keep many of our spring favorites alive and are essential to our food supply: bees.

One out of every three bites of food you and I eat is…