Letters to Share, July-August 2016
I recently attended the QUIP conference and wanted to send along some information from organizations dealing with the issues of neonicotinoids or neonics killing bees and glyphosate (which is in Roundup) killing milkweed that Monarch butterflies depend on.
Friends of the Earth (www.foe.org,1-866-217-8499) has sent an action letter to the Secretary of Agriculture urging him to investigate USDA repression and censorship of this information. Also they have convinced Home Depot and Lowes to eliminate bee-killing pesticides from their shelves and are now pressuring Ace and True Value Hardware stores to do the same.
The Environmental Defense Fund (www.edf.org, 1-800-684-3322) is working to restore millions of acres of milkweed to put Monarchs on a path to recovery. Other organizations working on these issues are Pesticide Action Network (PAN), which is researching and speaking on agroecology as an alternative to industrial agriculture and genetically engineered crops; Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), working to phase out neonic sales, and I believe Environmental Action is working on these issues as well.
Beekeepers have been complaining for more than a decade and finally the EPA ruled this year that one of the neonics, Imidacloprid, posed a significant risk to citrus and cotton—but not corn and leafy vegetables. However, one farmer watched bees die in neighboring cornfields after this chemical was used there. I hope this is helpful information; feel free to contact me for more information. I plan to set up a display on these issues in at our yearly meeting (Ohio Valley YM).
Jane Telfair Stowe