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Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Now that the campaign season is over, what do we do with all those political yard signs? Trash them? Keep them for memories' sake? Florida beekeeper Alma Johnson has a better idea: donate them to help keep her honeybee hives warm.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A bee gathers pollen on thyme on a balcony in Paris, France. ERIC FEFERBERG / AFP via Getty Images

The European Court of Justice on Oct. 8 found that France did not violate EU rules when it banned certain chemicals considered harmful to bees.

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Like many other plant-based foods and products, CBD oil is one dietary supplement where "organic" labels are very important to consumers. However, there are little to no regulations within the hemp industry when it comes to deeming a product as organic, which makes it increasingly difficult for shoppers to find the best CBD oil products available on the market.

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An endangered rusty patched bumble. Jull Utrup / USFWS

By Jodi Helmer

Bees are facing a pandemic of their own.

A collection of threats — habitat loss, pathogens, pesticides, pollution and poor nutrition — have led to widespread decline in bee health and pollinator populations.

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One in four species of bee is at risk of extinction in North America. Buntysmum / Needpix

By Leslie Brooks

More than 75 percent of the world's food crops rely on pollinators, according to the United Nations Environment Program. Through their pollination, bees not only promote biodiversity, but also secure our food supply.

But one in four species of bee is at risk of extinction in North America, according to the United Nations Environment Program. And the International Union for the Conservation of Nature has recorded declines in bee populations in Europe, South America, and Asia.

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Honeybee venom has shown promise against an aggressive type of breast cancer. Susan Walker / Moment / Getty Images

Could honeybees hold the key to treating an aggressive form of breast cancer?

A new study out of Australia found that honeybee venom rapidly killed the cells for triple-negative breast cancer, a type of breast cancer that currently has few treatment options.

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Pexels

By Rachael Bonoan and Phil Starks

As many states and cities across the U.S. struggle to control COVID-19 transmission, one challenge is curbing the spread among people living in close quarters. Social distancing can be difficult in places such as nursing homes, apartments, college dormitories and migrant worker housing.

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Bees are responsible for pollinating key crops like apples, and their decline now threatens crop yields. Pikist

Without bees, future generations may not be able to identify with adages like, "An apple a day keeps the doctor away."

Crop yields for key crops like apples, cherries and blueberries are down across the U.S. because of a lack of bees in agricultural areas, a Rutgers University-led study published Wednesday in The Royal Society found. This could have "serious ramifications" for global food security, reported The Guardian.

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Holger Casselmann / Wikimedia / CC BY-SA 3.0

The climate crisis has caused Japanese cherry blossoms to bloom in October and sped the arrival of spring in much of the U.S. But it turns out that humans aren't the only animals who can trick plants into flowering early.

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Beekeeper Younes Kheir shows Julia Klöckner, federal minister of Food and Agriculture, honeycombs on World Bee Day, May 20, 2020 in Berlin, Germany. Carsten Koall / picture alliance via Getty Images

By Ajit Niranjan

Coronavirus lockdowns that keep farmers from fields and suppliers from markets are restricting another cornerstone of the agriculture industry: bees.

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A blue bee on a firebush in Palm Beach, Florida on Sept. 10, 2016. Bob Peterson / CC BY 2.0

Scientists have "rediscovered" a rare blue bee that they feared was extinct.

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Asian giant hornets (Vespa mandarinia japonica) drinking sap from tree bark in Japan. Alpsdake/Wikipedia, CC BY-SA

By Akito Y Kawahara

Editor's note: According to recent press reports, two Asian giant hornets – a species not known to occur in North America – were found in northwest Washington state in late 2019, and a hornet colony was found and eliminated in British Columbia. Now scientists are trying to determine whether more of these large predatory insects are present in the region. Entomologist Akito Kawahara explains why headlines referring to "murder hornets" are misleading.

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The Asian giant hornet, the world's largest, was spotted for the first time in the U.S. in December. Photography by Shin.T / Moment / Getty Images Plus

Invasive "murder hornets" have been spotted in the U.S. for the first time, prompting concerns for the nation's honeybees and the trajectory of a year that has already brought locust invasions and a global pandemic.

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