The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
California Legislature Delays Crucial Honeybee Protections
As more and more proof emerges that the widespread die-off of honeybee colonies in the last decade is linked to use of neonicotinoid pesticides, the California legislature has passed a bill that would allow its Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) to do nothing until 2020.
Photo credit: Shutterstock
The DRP has been studying the issues for five years (a study that was supposed to take two years under the current law) without taking meaningful action. AB 1789 extends the study window and the time frame for taking action another six years.
Nonprofit environmental law organization Earthjustice is representing a coalition of groups—Pesticide Action Network, Center for Food Safety and Beyond Pesticides—which has filed a challenge in the California Superior Court for the County of Alameda, asking the DPR to ban the pesticides prior to the study completion.
Earthjustice attorney Greg Loarie said:
We’re disappointed that California legislators have just passed a bill that allows the California agencies to do nothing about widespread bee die-offs until 2020. While bee colonies are collapsing at historic rates and a huge California growing economy depends on these pollinators, we don’t have time to kick this problem that far down the road. We urge Gov. Brown to veto this bill and get to work with the state’s Department of Pesticide Regulation and commit to addressing this problem much sooner than 2020.
Since honeybees are essential to the pollination of many crops, including California's lucrative almond crop, and California is the leading agriculture state in the U.S., the loss of honeybees there would have a widespread impact on U.S. food production.
YOU ALSO MIGHT LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Jessica Corbett
Dozens of students, parents, teachers and professionals joined a Friday protest organized by Extinction Rebellion that temporarily stalled morning rush-hour traffic in London's southeasten borough of Lewisham to push politicians to more boldly address dangerous air pollution across the city.
Jose A. Bernat Bacete / Moment / Getty Images
By Bridget Shirvell
On a farm in upstate New York, a cheese brand is turning millions of pounds of food scraps into electricity needed to power its on-site businesses. Founded by eight families, each with their own dairy farms, Craigs Creamery doesn't just produce various types of cheddar, mozzarella, Swiss and Muenster cheeses, sold in chunks, slices, shreds and snack bars; they're also committed to becoming a zero-waste operation.
By Jessica A. Knoblauch
Summers in the Midwest are great for outdoor activities like growing your garden or cooling off in one of the area's many lakes and streams. But some waters aren't as clean as they should be.
That's in part because coal companies have long buried toxic waste known as coal ash near many of the Midwest's iconic waterways, including Lake Michigan. Though coal ash dumps can leak harmful chemicals like arsenic and cadmium into nearby waters, regulators have done little to address these toxic sites. As a result, the Midwest is now littered with coal ash dumps, with Illinois containing the most leaking sites in the country.
By Ketura Persellin
You've likely heard that eating meat and poultry isn't good for your health or the planet. Recent news from Washington may make meat even less palatable: Pork inspections may be taken over by the industry itself, if a Trump administration proposal goes into effect, putting tests for deadly pathogens into the hands of the industry.
More than 600 people gathered on a Florida beach Saturday to break the world record for the largest underwater cleanup of ocean litter.