Bee Population Under 'Grave Threat' As Trump Administration Lifts Pesticide Ban

Research has linked neonicotinoid pesticides to the decline of bee populations
Bee Populations
Neonics post a threat to bees and other insects

An Obama-era ban on the use of neonicotinoid pesticides and cultivation of GMO crops on US wildlife refuges has been lifted, leaving the nation's bee population under threat.

The ban on the pesticides, commonly referred to as neonics, was originally imposed by the Obama administration as a result of a lawsuit filed by environmentalists.

Lifted

The US Fish and Wildlife Service announced an end to the two-year ban on Thursday - adding that use of neonics on refuges would now be approved or denied on a case-by-case basis.

Fish and Wildlife Service Deputy Director Greg Sheehan said that the change in policy is not only intended to 'maximize production' and 'fulfill needed farming practices' but to accommodate hunters.

Hunting of Geese
The reintroduction of neonics is partly aimed at promoting hunting of animals such as ducks and geese on wildlife refuges

Promoting hunting

According to Sheehan, neonics encourage the growth of forage for commonly hunted birds such as ducks and geese.

The promotion of hunting on public lands is reportedly a top priority of US Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.

Criticism

The move is not without criticism - including that of one Facebook user who shared the news with a caption calling the ban lift 'short sighted' and predicting 'long term harm that may not be reversible [sic].’

Jenny Keating of environmental protection organization Defenders of Wildlife said: "Industrial agriculture has no place on refuges dedicated to wildlife conservation and protection of some of the most vital and vulnerable species."

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are prepared in the author's capacity and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Plant Based News itself. 

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PBN Contributor:

Emily Court is a passionate ethical vegan from Eastern Canada. She is a Challenge 22 Mentor, Digital Writer, and experienced animal advocate driven by issues of animal liberation and social justice. She studied at Dalhousie University, where her thesis highlighted intercultural and gender relations. She is an established public speaker, writer, and world traveller with a drive to provide a voice to those who might not otherwise have one. You can follow her on Instagram @emily.j.court or on Twitter @_EmilyJCourt_.

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