From EARTH WE ARE ONE:
Follow the link to view the video Vanishing of the Bees - Official Trailer.
April 24th, 2015
Bees’ importance to the planet cannot be overstated. The tiny, bumbling bee is responsible for pollinating one-sixth of flowering plants in the world, and also about 400 different types of agricultural plants. In fact, it is estimated that just last year, the honey-producing pollinators helped provide over $19 billion worth of agricultural crops with their pollination services. Globally, they are responsible for helping to create a $300 billion revenue.
Just based on those facts alone, it’s pretty clear that bees are important and need to be preserved: not just because they help keep the food chain flowering and producing food, but because they are a hard-working, selfless species that are incremental to the sustainability and the future of this earth.
But as has been shown multiple times in recent years - and in Ontario, Canada - certain agricultural methods which are far from sustainable are causing bee populations to decrease.
According to beekeeper Dave Schuit, who produces honey in Elmwood, Canada, he and his farm lost about 37 million bees (about 600 hives) once GMO corn started to get planted in the nearby area. “Once the corn started to get planted our bees died by the millions,” Schuit said.*
He and other beekeepers are blaming neonicotinoids, or “neonics” for the death of many of their bees. Although Europe has eliminated the use of neonicotinoid class of pesticides from its market, the USDA still hasn’t banned the chemical presently produced by Bayer CropScience Inc.
The reason pesticides containing neonicotinoids are banned in other countries is because they contaminate pollen and nectar, which in effect damages and kills insects like the bees. Two of Bayer CropScience’s most popular pesticides containing neonics include Imidacloprid and Clothianidin. These drugs continue to be marketed, even though they have been linked with many large-scale bee ‘die-offs’ in both European and U.S. countries.
According to Nathan Carey, another local farmer near Ontario, Canada, he noticed the past spring that there weren’t enough bees, and he believes this is due to a strong correlation between the death of bees and the insecticide use.
However, as Snopes* was quick to point out, the GMO crops themselves remain 'unproven' to be the cause of colony collapse. What is more likely, according to the site, is that "the neonicotinoid pesticides are coating corn seeds, and with the use of new air seeders, are blowing pesticide dust into the air when planted." Either way, it is due to unsustainable farming methods that bees are dying in rapid numbers.
Worldwide, bees are in decline; but when a little common sense is applied, it doesn’t seem like too much of a mystery. When scientists tested samples of bees, wax, and pollen, the found presence of 121 pesticides. Such finding lends credence to the theory that pesticides are contributing to CCD. “We believe that some subtle interactions between nutrition, pesticide exposure, and other stressors are converging to kill colonies,” said Jeffery Pettis, of the ARS’s bee research laboratory.
Another study found that neonicotinoid pesticides kill bees by damaging their immune system which makes them unable to fight disease. After a large loss of bees, Imadacloprid has been banned for the use of sunflowers and corn in Canda, but will it be enough to help revive bee populations?
Slowly, countries around the world are waking up to the danger of neonicotinoids. France has now rejected Bayer’s application for Clothianidin, and Italy has banned certain neonicotinoids as well. The European Union has also banned a list of pesticides, while the United States has yet to follow suit, however.
What is clear is that something must be done to help preserve and revive the bee population worldwide before it is too late.
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Lissa, Thanks for bringing this to our attention. This is a frightening result of man's attempts to farm without due regard to the possible consequences. It reminds me of when I was growing up. I was very interested in reading books with a "natural disaster" type of theme. in particular books by John Christopher, e.g. The Death of Grass, where all types of grass died as a result of some natural disaster, and how society broke down as a result. People starved when wheat. corn.etc. all died. This was fiction but very realistic, and caused by something beyond man's control. Yet here we are creating our own disaster, through greed and stupidity. Hopefully, it won't lead to such a dire conclusion but I don't have much faith in our leaders to wake up to what might happen if we continue with current practices. Are we really stupid enough to continue to ignore natures warnings, about climate change, GM, insecticide build up in produce, etc? Our pollies don't seem to even think that we have a right to know precisely what is in the food we eat, I'm sure that if it was mandatory to tell us how much GM there is in every product, then hopefully this would be enough to kill off GM through lack of sales of such products.
I'm generally a positive person but I see nothing but doom and gloom ahead at the moment. The population of human animal on the planet is now destroying that planet. I can't see how it will have a happy outcome unless the human race makes some radical decisions right now.
There's some movement in the right direction but I fear it's too little too late.
Bear in mind with any of these articles that are floating around on the net that there can be propaganda from both sides. Always read any articles with an open mind.
Having said that, I personally hate Monsanto with a vengeance.
(Warning: personal-opinion-filled-rant to follow)
I think it is shameful, no EVIL, what these big companies like Monsanto do.
I'm sure it started out as someone's "noble" idea to improve crops, reduce pests and feed the world, but it has become corrupt and they are now morally bankrupt. Greed and corporate agendas are hijacking our food supplies and they are trying to make "Their way" the only way.
I believe it is vitally important that more and more people begin to grow their own foods, organically, using open pollinated varieties and to keep bees, if possible.
I think it is even more important for the people living in cities to do this, AWAY from major farming areas.
Hopefully, the vast paved buffers between contaminated farmlands and surrounds will allow an unlikely refuge for continued healthy populations of bees and sources of viable, non-patented, uncorrupted seed for future generations.
The more people that do this, the harder it will be for the greedy corporations to methodically take over and monopolise, so that their seed and growing methods are the only ones that are viable (which is what I fear they are working toward).
It would also make it more likely that at least some pockets of healthy bees continue to exist to repopulate if ever they get the opportunity.
And no, as long as the money continues to flow, no government is going to wake up and stop these guys. If one product is banned, they'll just create another one to get around the rules. Defeat them in one place, they'll pop up in another, like the weeds we try to remove from our gardens. So long as there is profit or potential for profit, they won't stop.
Corrupt politicians, corrupt businesses and farmers who are either only interested in the bottom line or feel trapped into using their products will always be there to keep them going.
I think the only way to shut these mobs down is a global "revolt" against them: a Total Boycott of all of their products and their subsidiaries' products. Stop the profit...stop the company.
But really...how likely is that to happen?
(End of rant, and yes....I feel a bit better.)
Some organisation in the know needs to publish a list of related companies and all of their products. Such lists are around for example the Koch Bros in the States who have many devious fingers in many questionable pies. I would like to know and I would not be the only one.
Weeds however serve many useful purposes. 'A plant out of place' 'a plant whose usefulness we are yet to discover' are but two descriptions of weeds. Weed tea is a fine nutrient source. The same cannot be said of Monsanto and similar companies. A benefit would be for them and their shareholders to be turned into compost.
I don't know if this has been posted here before or not. I just found it.
This article, "4 Ways To Keep Monsanto Out Of Your Home Garden" is over a year old, but there are some very good links within it regarding the companies and brands used or owned by Monsanto.
There are also lists of companies/organisations which are NOT in bed with Monsanto.
The lists reflect mostly US & Canada details (of course), but you may find it useful.
Good link Jan. Very scary stuff that chart showing the seed companies owned by the chemical companies. Depressing stuff. An Australian list would be useful if it exists.
I've added it to the GM Group discussions as well.