Categorized | Agriculture

New pesticide labels better protect bees, other pollinators


In an ongoing effort to protect bees and other pollinators, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has developed new pesticide labels that prohibit use of some neonicotinoid pesticide products where bees are present.

“Multiple factors play a role in bee colony declines, including pesticides. The Environmental Protection Agency is taking action to protect bees from pesticide exposure and these label changes will further our efforts,” said Jim Jones, assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.

“The proper use of pesticides is critical for the protection of honey bees, and the crops that depend on them for pollination,” said Kathleen Johnson, EPA’s Enforcement Division Director for the Pacific Southwest. “We will be working with our state partners to ensure the pesticides subject to these new labeling requirements are applied correctly.”

The new labels will have a bee advisory box and icon with information on routes of exposure and spray drift precautions. Today’s announcement affects products containing the neonicotinoids imidacloprid, dinotefuran, clothianidin and thiamethoxam.

The EPA will work with pesticide manufacturers to change labels so that they will meet the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) safety standard.

In May, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and EPA released a comprehensive scientific report on honey bee health, showing scientific consensus that there are a complex set of stressors associated with honey bee declines, including loss of habitat, parasites and disease, genetics, poor nutrition and pesticide exposure.

The agency continues to work with beekeepers, growers, pesticide applicators, pesticide and seed companies, and federal and state agencies to reduce pesticide drift dust and advance best management practices.

The EPA recently released new enforcement guidance to federal, state and tribal enforcement officials to enhance investigations of beekill incidents.

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2 Responses to “New pesticide labels better protect bees, other pollinators”

  1. apiarist says:

    This is not journalism it is a Press Release engineered by the EPA to give the illusion of regulation when there is none, passed along without comment.. It addresses only foliar applications, when the major delivery system for neonicotionoids is seed treatment. These pesticides have half lives of years and there is no protection by applying them foliarly after sunset of when it is below 55 degrees because they will contaminate the plants, soil and water for years and the EPA knows this full well. Most of the language is advisory, which means it has no more force of law than if you or I were to comment. Where the EPA does use mandatory language it then guts any likelihood of increased protection by offering a list of conditions under which the law can be disregarded. These label changes do not offer increased protection, in fact the changes are a primer on how users can avoid compliance with the law.

  2. madnessofcrowds says:

    mirrors and snake oil. The changes
    to pesticide labels are purely
    cosmetic, dreamed up by the poison
    manufacturers PR department. Over
    10 million bee colonies have been
    killed in the USA since 2003
    (conservatively). They were killed
    by neonicotinoid insecticides,
    which have been banned in France
    since 2000AD. Neonics are SYSTEMIC
    – they are not sprayed onto the
    leaves of flowering crops; they
    are applied as seed coatings at
    the time of planting. The poison
    is then absorbed into the entire
    cellular structure of the living
    plant, whether it be corn, wheat,
    soya, canola, sunflowers, peas,
    beans, almonds, apples, tomatoes,
    blueberries or your garden

    The plant
    may flower weeks or months after
    the poison was applied to the seed
    but the poison is waiting there
    all the time; as soon as the plant
    blooms the poison appears in the
    pollen and nectar and the bees,
    bumblebees and butterflies die in
    their billions.

    farmers to only apply pesticides
    when the crop is not flowering is
    pure sophistry.

    The poison is already there, in
    the soil and the seeds, in the
    stems, in the sap, in the flowers,
    in the pollen and the nectar.

    The EPA
    has NOTHING to do with
    environmental protection. The real
    organisation was hijacked years
    ago by Bush Senior, and filled
    with Monsanto executives. Its only
    purpose today is to keep the
    poison on the market and the vast
    profits rolling in. Everything
    else – the bees, the water, the
    frogs, the birds, the bats – you
    and me – all of that is

    needs a revolution in its
    ‘regulation’ of pesticides; currently there is NO REGULATION.

    but a complete re-start will do. The Poison Manufacturers conquered
    your regulatory castles long ago; all
    those well-fed regulators, with fat
    salaries, sitting in those air
    conditioned offices, they
    are in fact ‘pesticide lobbyists’,
    masquerading as environmental
    watchdogs. Sadly, America’s pesticide-watchdog is deaf, blind and
    toothless; Monsanto, Bayer and Syngenta castrated it years ago.”


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