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  1.  
    https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/page/speakout/bees-urgent-vote
    "Tomorrow, Environment Secretary Owen Paterson will be in Europe voting on whether to suspend the use of pesticides which are being blamed for killing our bees.Right now he is planning on scuppering the plans.

    If Owen Paterson hears from his fellow MPs that their constituents are furious, it could persuade him to vote the right way. Can you take 2 minutes now to email your MP and ask them to tell Owen Paterson to protect our bees? Enter your postcode on the right to get started"
    • CommentAuthorTriassic
    • CommentTimeMar 14th 2013
     
    Done
    • CommentAuthordocmartin
    • CommentTimeMar 14th 2013
     
    Me, also.
    • CommentAuthorfinny
    • CommentTimeMar 14th 2013
     
    Our local assembly member rocks, reckon he might just give them a call..
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2013
     
    Us too
  2.  
    Done

    My Dad is a avid beekeep and my Grandfather kept bees before that.

    Here is some extra if you want to add to the pre-written bit

    Bees are important pollinators and reseach collated in 2007 by The National Audit Office estimated the value of the bees' services at £200m a year. The retail value of what they pollinate was valued closer to £1bn. These figures are now 6 years out of date so these figures will have only gobe up.

    Beekeepers have been struggling over the last decade with many dieases threatening the survival of bees, these include Varroa mites, American Foul Brood, colony collapse and nosema ceranae.

    A ban on pesticdes killing bees may just reverse the decline and allow the UK population of bees to recover.
    • CommentAuthorbella
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2013
     
    Will do along these lines.

    This business of the bees really is very, very serious, a perfect storm. PLEASE listen to the independent toxicologists who know what they are taking about. So called nicotinic insecticides induce paralysis by blocking the action of the chemical (proper name acetyl choline) released from the nerve endings in muscle inducing paralysis - very effective against flying insects and at low doses! If they don't fly they starve and become susceptible to all kinds of disease. Organophsphates are neurotoxins and feature as weed killers as well as inecticides- remember the farmers exposed to high concentrations of sheep dip? Every garden centre has shelves of these chemicals. Every rape seed field is mass sprayed once the seeds have set as a prelude to harvesting. Grazing land is sprayed to suppress the weeds. Ignore big pharma - they are gulling you and they know it.
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2013
     
    Posted By: bella.................. So called nicotinic insecticides induce paralysis by blocking the action of the chemical (proper name acetyl choline) released from the nerve endings in muscle inducing paralysis.

    Closely related and very similar effect to military nerve agents. But this would be harmless to humans wouldn't it.:devil:
  3.  
    Done, for those thinking this will take too long.... It won't! Maybe a minute or two topps
    • CommentAuthorRobinB
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2013 edited
     
    Done, 1 minute including adding a bit to the standard letter. Thanks James for raising the topic.
    • CommentAuthorShevek
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2013
     
    done.
    • CommentAuthorseascape
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2013
     
    Done.
  4.  
    Also done, but not expecting much action from my local Tory....
    • CommentAuthorFred56
    • CommentTimeMar 16th 2013
     
    Politicians get it wrong again?
    http://www.scotsman.com/business/food-drink-and-agriculture/eu-holds-fire-on-pesticide-ban-over-bees-1-2840326

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/mar/15/bee-harming-pesticides-escape-european-ban

    Politicians are basically venal with no foresight beyond the next election. The industry is playing the 'no causal link' line just like they did with asbestos, tobacco, nitrogen loading, compound gas emissions, particulate emissions etc etc.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeMar 16th 2013
     
    Posted By: Fred56Politicians get it wrong again?
    They probably read this and got the wrong end of the stick, not that I know anything about pollen apart from it makes me sneeze, the more that bees can collect the better.

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn19122-how-plants-get-by-when-pollinators-vanish.html
    • CommentAuthorDarylP
    • CommentTimeMar 16th 2013
     
    My better-half's dad is a beekeeper of long standing in S England. Without bees he reckons between 1/3 and 1/2 of our pollinated plants will die out, eg food crops for us and livestock!
    It is not rocket-science.....:devil:
    • CommentAuthorbella
    • CommentTimeMar 17th 2013
     
    The Bees lost the vote.
    • CommentAuthorcrusoe
    • CommentTimeApr 15th 2013
     
    Bit late to the party - but just to say that the Soil Association has organised its own campaign - 'Keep Britain Buzzing' - to raise awareness of the dangers of neocotinoids - which have been banned in many countries. Their site is www.soilassociation.org and there is an ongoing campaign right now.
    • CommentAuthorjamesingram
    • CommentTimeApr 16th 2013 edited
     
    "Private letters shows pesticide companies desperate attempt to protect bee-killing pesticides"
    "Re #neonicotinoid pesticides & mass #bee death, Bayer (chemical company) say fault lies with farmers not with chemicals themselves http://bit.ly/ZlJV7Z "
    http://www.keithtaylormep.org.uk/2013/04/15/private-letters-shows-pesticide-companies-desperate-attempt-to-protect-bee-killing-pesticides/
    • CommentAuthorbella
    • CommentTimeApr 16th 2013
     
    To paraphrase that feisty Swansea girl (when the Minister for War had consorted with the same girl as the Russian Attache but denied it in court) "they would say that wouldn't they". And they always, always do. Read "Merchants of Doubt". By the way, note that subtle "neo" infront of "nicotinoid". Needless to say I didn't get a response from my MP. Did anyone?
    • CommentAuthorFred56
    • CommentTimeApr 16th 2013
     
    I got a letter back form my MP, Julian Smith, Skipton and Ripon, Cons. The usual specious tosh as you might expect. If you follow the argument carefully it goes like this.

    Studies have revealed a link between Bee and pollinator decline and neonicotinoids. Our government took the view that you can slow this while thing down by casting doubt on studies by Johnny Foreigner (the excuse being that the studies were lab based) and reinvent a British wheel by way of a British study. It set out to do a study - done by itself of course (DEFRA). The study failed because a field study requires a control. The UK is so heavily soaked in neonicotinoids that the control sites were contaminated. Brilliant, the government play the old 'no causal link' card because its own incompetent department bungled the field study by failing to use a valid control. Blatant playing for time.

    This is the usual, venal 'business as usual' stuff from a government and an industry with hands down each others trousers.
  5.  
    Fiona Mactaggart MP for Slough , got back to me with a positive supportive response and attached Gov. press release as Fred describes above.
    • CommentAuthorseascape
    • CommentTimeApr 16th 2013
     
    Mine too
    • CommentAuthorseascape
    • CommentTimeApr 16th 2013
     
    Mine too.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeApr 17th 2013
     
    Posted By: bellathat feisty Swansea girl
    Mandy Rice-Davies - I remember her, I mean it, well.

    Posted By: bellaNeedless to say I didn't get a response from my MP. Did anyone?
    Yes indeed, from my Devon MP (Tory), always a response to the numerous Avaaz/38Degrees pro formas we send him in duplicate. Very valuable to have him spell out his position even tho it's often the party line. In this case, was v curious - he made clear at outset that he personally strongly supported a ban by European Commission, and that the UK govt also supported a ban but on the other hand wanted rigorous attention paid to scientific evidence; then a v confused account of how 'many countries' had opposed the ban or abstained, incl UK govt. My reply letter from him arrived several days before my partner's, and in hers the whole last bit was omitted from otherwise same letter - I think he'd been leaned on.
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTimeApr 21st 2013
     
    Chatted to my neighbour the other day a serious beekeeper, who informs me that the BBKA are against a ban on neonics. They tend to favour a wait and see, more research, approach. His take, presumably as a result of local association discussions is that the ban neonic stance flawed, and apparently largely based on one unfortunate incident in France where a farmer inadvertantly applied too much neonic seed dressing resulting in wind borne dispersal which did indeed kill bees and other pollinators but you can't base a banning policy on that type of incident. The BBKA also seem to be saying that the most widely used method of neonic application is as a seed dressing which is mostly used at a time when bees are dormant. They also apparently are very wary of a ban on the basis of what will replace neonics should a ban be effective. So the questions I ask are:-

    1. Is the BBKA still receiving funds from Bayer, this potentially may influence their thinking?
    2. Are the historical facts correct and if so why do other EU countries seem to be more cautious than our own.
    3. Neonics are systemic, and I'm guessing that's how they are effective against sap suckers, aphids and the like. But if they are systemic then presumably they find their way into pollen and nectar and ultimately honey. Is anyone testing honey?
    4. Neonicotinides have been used for 20 years or so, apparently widely used in Australia with no ill effect on their bee population, could other bee population decline factors be at work, e.g. farming practices, or atmospheric pollution.
    5. Because they are predominantly a seed dressing do neonics remain in the soil and therfore is their polluting effect cumulative and does it get into the water courses, is anyone testing?
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeApr 21st 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: owlmanIs the BBKA still receiving funds from Bayer, this potentially may influence their thinking?
    Indeed - and why did they ever receive funds from Bayer, and even if it's been expediently discontinued now, after the row when it was revealed, would the BBKA's entrenched attitude just happen to change overnight? No doubt about it, BBKA has been bought. Anyway BBKA represents all that is old fashioned, unchanged since 1920s, in bee keeping, in essence a factory-farming approach to bees, even tho all those charming old bee keepers would be horrified to be so accused.
    • CommentAuthorFred56
    • CommentTimeApr 21st 2013
     
    There has been studies on the accumulation of systemic insecticides in pollen and nectar and studies on the effect of ingestion at environmentally realistic levels. The effects on fecundity are significant. I have not read studies on other effects but will as I get time.
    Example,
    Layock et al, (2012), Effects of imidacloprid, a neonicotinoid pesticide, on reproduction in worker bumble bees. Ecotoxicology; Oct 2012, Vol. 21 Issue 7, p1937-1945

    Also, yes systemic insecticides do trans-locate to pollen and nectar, see also

    Stoner and Eitzer (2012), Movement of soil-applied imidacloprid and thiamethoxam into nectar and pollen of squash, Plos One [PLoS One] 2012; Vol. 7 (6), pp. e39114
    • CommentAuthorRobinB
    • CommentTimeApr 22nd 2013
     
    38degrees.org.uk have a petition running at the moment if you still think a ban a good idea ( FWIW I do)
    • CommentAuthorseascape
    • CommentTimeApr 22nd 2013
     
    Have done the petition.
   
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