The Obama administration’s decision to set up a Pollinator Health Task Force aimed at improving the health of the US bee populations, was criticized as inadequate Tuesday by environmentalists.
“The White House must stop favoring corporate interests by protecting the pesticide industry rather than the pollinators on which our food system depends,” stated Food and Water Watch (FWW), which believes a more effective strategy would be to remove the lethal pesticides from the market, .
The White House announced a plan to promote the health of honeybees populations after U.S. beekeepers recorded an unprecedented 42 percent decline in colonies in one single year.
The government has warned that a third of all food could disappear without the pollination provided by bees.
However the task force’s was criticised for “voluntary proposals” deemed “an unacceptable concession to pesticide industry interests”, FWW explained adding “We have seen these types of loose standards fail to protect human health and environmental well-being before,” .
Other environmental groups have also highlighted the issue, including Friends of the Earth and Green America.
They especially referred to a certain pesticide class called neonicotinoids, the most widely used in the world – whose use was suspended in the European Union in 2013.
Various investigations found that exposure to that particular group of pesticides killed about half of the bees in a colony.