— EPA

Pesticides not sole culprit in honey bee colony declines — ScienceDaily

Date:
March 18, 2015
Source:
University of Maryland
Summary:
The world’s most common insecticide does not significantly harm honey bee colonies at real-world dosage levels, a new multiyear, field-based study shows. “Imidacloprid is the most widely used insecticide in the world. It’s not restricted because it is very safe–an order of magnitude safer than organophosphates,” an author said, drawing a comparison with a class of chemicals known to be highly toxic to nearly all living things.

Colony declines are a major threat to the world’s honey bees, as well as the many wild plants and crops the bees pollinate. Among the lineup of possible culprits–including parasites, disease, climate stress and malnutrition–many have pointed the finger squarely at insecticides as a prime suspect. However, a new study from the University of Maryland shows that the world’s most common insecticide does not significantly harm honey bee colonies at real-world dosage levels.

The study, which was published March 18, 2015 in the journal PLOS ONE, looked at the effects of the insecticide imidacloprid on honey bee colonies over a three-year period. To see significant negative effects, including a sharp decrease in winter survival rates, the researchers had to expose the colonies to at least four times as much insecticide encountered under normal circumstances. At 20 times the normal exposure levels, the colonies experienced more severe consequences.

The study does not totally absolve imidacloprid of a causative role in honey bee colony declines. Rather, the results indicate that insecticides are but one of many factors causing trouble for the world’s honey bee populations.
“Everyone is pointing the finger at these insecticides. If you pull up a search on the Internet, that’s practically all anyone is talking about,” said Galen Dively, emeritus professor of entomology at UMD and lead author of the study. “This paper says no, it’s not the sole cause. It contributes, but there is a bigger picture.”

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What are pesticides and how do they get into our food? – YouTube

What are pesticides and how do they get into our food? – YouTube.

National Cancer Institute Responds to Montgomery County | No Proof of Dangers | Lawn Pesticides

National Cancer Institute talking circles around dangers of pesticides.

Won’t address council regarding health dangers, political issue not scientific.

No proof pesticides cause harm.

Pesticide Free Failure | Frequent Seeding and Mowing | Leventhal gets roughed up on radio defending ‘gentle’ ban on pesticides – The Washington Post


By Bill Turque March 10

Things got a little testy Tuesday on WMAL (AM 630) when Montgomery County Council President George Leventhal was asked about the bill he is sponsoring that would ban cosmetic pesticides from residential lawns and athletic fields.

Morning co-hosts Brian Wilson and Larry O’Connor — who, like most at the station, trend libertarian/conservative — started the phone interview with O’Connor asking why Montgomery County should regulate pesticides already overseen by the Environmental Protection Agency and the state of Maryland.

Leventhal — who makes no bones about his desire to make Montgomery County the safest, healthiest jurisdiction in the land — cited “abundant” research raising concerns about whether chemicals such as Glyphosate and 2-4D, which are active ingredients in many lawn-care products, could cause childhood cancers. He defended the measure as “a very gentle law,” with light penalties (a $50 fine for the first offense) and intended to educate homeowners and change their practices, rather than to punish.

“It’s a gentle law unless you deeply care about your lawn and watching it being decimated by grub worms,” Wilson said.

“Okay, you’ve obviously got a point of view on this question,” Leventhal countered.

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Overwhelming Majority Supports Continued Neonic Use | Benefits of Neonicotinoid Seed Treatments to Soybean Production |Regulations.gov – Docket Browser

Benefits of Neonicotinoid Seed Treatments to Soybean Production

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Docket ID: EPA-HQ-OPP-2014-0737Agency: Environmental Protection Agency

Summary:

Public docket for the Agency’s assessment of benefits of neonicotinoid seed treatments to soybean production