Toronto, ON – With yesterday’s report on bee health, the Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry is raising the profile on the need for action on neonicotinoid pesticides in the face of the ongoing decimation of Canada’s bee population.
We welcome the Senate committee’s recommendation to reduce conditional registrations for neonic pesticide products. However, its proposed action does not go far enough to protect bees and other pollinators. Fortunately, the Ontario government is acting now on the issue with its draft regulation to protect bees and other pollinators from neonics.
Scientists agree that neonics are toxic to bees, birds, and ecosystems. In addition, last week’s leaked draft report from Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) shows that coating seeds with neonicotinoid treatments has minimal benefit to corn and soybean yields.
Research included in the Senate report confirmed that neonic pesticides are affecting pollinator health, and harming bee populations. It is therefore necessary to take action to reduce neonicotinoid pesticide use in Canada, especially when scientific evidence shows that decisive action can be taken on neonics without significant harm to Canada’s agricultural sector.
The evidence in both reports suggests that Ontario is on the right track and should move ahead with its draft regulation. In the absence of clear federal action on this pressing issue, Canadians will have to continue to look for provincial leadership to protect bees, ecosystems and our food supply.
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For more information or media requests, please contact:
Tim Ehlich, tehlich@environmentaldefence.ca, 416-323-9531 ext. 223, 647-468-3641 (cell)