Bee-killing pesticides may also harm human brain development
Once again a study proves that neonicotinoids are harmful but this time it isn't just the honeybee, it's yours truly that is in danger.
Still unsure just what these chemicals are? Think you don't have them at your house? Read this from Wiki:
Imidacloprid is currently the most widely used insecticide in the world. Although it is now off patent, the primary manufacturer of this chemical is Bayer CropScience (part of Bayer AG). It is sold under many names for many uses; it can be applied by soil injection, tree injection, application to the skin of the plant, broadcast foliar, ground application as a granular or liquid formulation, or as a pesticide-coated seed treatment. Imidacloprid is widely used for pest control in agriculture. Other uses include application to foundations to prevent termite damage, pest control for gardens and turf, treatment of domestic pets to control fleas, protection of trees from boring insects, and in preservative treatment of some types of lumber products (e.g., Ecolife brand).
Now take a look at some brand names that it is sold under.Again thanks to Wiki:
|Name||Company||Products||Turnover in million US$ (2009)|
|Imidacloprid||Bayer CropScience||Confidor, Admire, Gaucho||1,091|
|Thiamethoxam||Syngenta||Actara, Platinum, Cruiser||627|
|Clothianidin||Sumitomo Chemical/Bayer CropScience||Poncho, Dantosu, Dantop||439|
|Acetamiprid||Nippon Soda||Mospilan, Assail, ChipcoTristar||276|
|Dinotefuran||Mitsui Chemicals||Starkle, Safari, Venom||79|
|Sulfoxaflor||Dow Agrosciences||Transform, Closer||N/A|
|Nitenpyram||Sumitomo Chemical||Capstar, Bestguard||8|
And selected brand names include: Admire, Advantage (Advocate) (flea killer for pets), Confidor, Conguard, Gaucho, Hachikusan, Intercept, Kohinor, Mallet, Merit, Nuprid, Optrol, Premise, Prothor, Provado, Turfthor, Winner, and Xytect.
Do you have a pet in the house? Then you probably use this biocide on a monthly basis! Are YOU killing the bees???
From the Internet news:
Earlier this year, the European Union put a two-year moratorium on a class of pesticides known as neonicotinoids, believed to be a cause of the massive die-off threatening the world’s honey bee populations.
It turns out, the pesticides aren’t just dangerous for bees. New research suggests they “may adversely affect the development of neurons and brain structures associated with functions such as learning and memory,” the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) announced Tuesday. In response, the EFSA is recommending that maximum exposure levels be lowered until further research can be done.
The research highlights the health risks of two chemicals: acetamiprid and imidacloprid, the latter of which is produced by Bayer. The Guardian describes the findings:
The move stems from research on rats which concluded “neonicotinoids may adversely affect human health, especially the developing brain”. The newborn rats studied in the experiments found those exposed to one of the pesticides, called imidacloprid, suffered brain shrinkage, reduced activity of the nerve signals controlling movement, and weight loss. Another rat study found that exposure to the other pesticide, acetamiprid, led to reduced weight, survival and response to startling sounds.
EFSA said that for acetamiprid, the acceptable daily intake – the amount in food or drinks that can be ingested daily over a lifetime without an appreciable health risk – and the acceptable operator exposure level – the maximum exposure for workers – should be cut by two-thirds. The acute reference dose – the amount of a substance that can be ingested over a day without an appreciable health risk – should be cut by three-quarters, EFSA said.
For imidacloprid, the current acceptable daily intake was judged adequate, but the other two limits should be cut by a quarter, EFSA said.
All three chemicals currently banned in the E.U. are available in the U.S. — as the New York Times reports, they can be purchased at Home Depot. The Environmental Protection Agency, according to the Times, has expressed concerned that neonicotinoids could be having a negative effect on bee populations, but has ”not yet seen enough evidence to take action.”
“EFSA’s concern over the neurotoxicity of neonics is a reminder that there’s a great deal we don’t know about these systemic chemicals,” said Lex Horan, the Midwest Organizer of the Pesticide Action Network (PAN), in a statement. “They were hurried through EPA’s regulatory process with ‘conditional registrations,’ and scientific research continues to reveal more about their harmful effects — on pollinators and beyond. These important, common-sense moves in Europe should prompt EPA to do more to protect bees and kids from pesticides.”
Environmental campaigner George Monbiot has called Neonicotinoids "the new DDT" because, he states, "they were licensed for widespread use before they had been properly tested" and "are now ripping the natural world apart"