It's Time to Make a Buzz Against Pesticides
Fields of fruits and vegetables decorate the land and joyful families sit around a table outside to enjoy a healthy dinner- meanwhile, the bees are busy moving pollen from one plant to another. Without the bees, our plants would not be fertilized. Without fertilization, plants are unable to produce food. To put it even more simply: we need bees. It appears that these fun-filled days may soon dwindle down to scarcity.
Over the past 50 years, we have lost almost 50% of our bee population. With these insects being catalysts for the sustenance of human life and contributors to a significant portion of our global food supply, this startling depletion is also wiping away the future of humanity.
Human action takes most of the blame for the continual decimation of the bees. Pesticides are extremely toxic to pollinators. Those who use these chemicals are often trying to keep unwarranted pests and insects away from their crops; consequentially, bees are greatly harmed by pesticides and insecticides. Bees appear to fall victim to this belief that they just buzz annoyingly and painfully sting people-- not many understand how important they are to survival.
Bees can either individually die on site, the lesser of two crises, or they could transport the toxicants back to their colony through contaminated nectar and pollen or through its body. This could potentially destroy the entire hive. One crop of pesticide has the ability to take down entire colonies-- it is no shock that the drop in bee populations have been so drastic. Even at low pesticide levels, bees could suffer from:
- compromised immune responses
- shortened lifespan
- impaired memory
- reduced communication
- disrupted brood cycle
The EU is planning to pass policies for pesticide reduction and potentially ban pesticide usage in its entirety. Having a ban in Europe could spark a global shift towards organic food production and a worldwide effort to sustain our bee population.
We first need to help get an official ban passed before we can progress elsewhere. It is about time we stand up for the bees. Sign this petition to lobby for a pesticide ban!
Written by Jasmine Kwok, Artwork by Naomie Njetchou