Bees: Colony Collapse Disorder Sweeps Across US

Wed, 29 Jan 2014

US - This week, beekeepers across the country are waking their hives from winter hibernation to pollinate blooming almond orchards in California. But many honeybees won’t buzz back to life at all.

A deadly bee illness called Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) is sweeping across the US. Just last winter CCD wiped out almost a third of the nation’s hives.

Not all the factors that cause CCD are yet known, but we do know one guilty party: A class of pesticides — known as neonicotinoids — that studies have shown to weaken, disorient and kill honeybees.

Despite the evidence, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) just last year approved a new Dow pesticide called sulfoxaflor, which its own research showed was “highly toxic” to bees. To save the honeybee, the EPA needs to step up according to Greenpeace.

Beekeepers, farmers and environmental groups have joined together to file a legal brief against the newly approved pesticide sulfoxaflor — a chemical the EPA’s own studies admits are essentially 'bee poison'.