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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      House Committee on Agriculture
      Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology, and Foreign Agriculture
    IntroducedJuly 16th, 2013

What is it?

This bill would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to suspend the registration — i.e. halt the sale and distribution — of plant, tree, and soil insecticides that bees are attracted to. 


It would bar the use of these products until the EPA has determined that they will not cause unreasonable harm to "pollinators." Pollinators in this case are defined as native bees, honeybees, birds, bats, and other species of beneficial insects.


Determining the effects of these insecticides on pollinators would be based on:

  • An evaluation of the published and peer-reviewed scientific evidence on whether the use of these insecticides has adverse effects on pollinators.

  • A field study supervised by the EPA Administrator that evaluates residues, annual residual build-up, chronic low-dose exposure, and the cumulative effects of multiple chemical exposures.


H.R. 2692 would prohibit the EPA Administrator from lifting the ban on the insecticides listed in this act until the study has come to solid conclusions. The insecticides in question are used for seed treatment, soil application, and foliar treatment on bee attractive plants, trees, and grains; imidacloprid, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, dinotafuran, and any other members of the nitro group of neonicotinoid insecticides.


The Secretary of the Interior and EPA Administrator would be required to monitor the health and population status of native bees in annual public reports to Congress, and identify the scope and likely cause of unusual native bee mortality.

Impact

Bees and other pollinators under this act, people who use insecticides covered in this legislation, the EPA, the Department of the Interior, and the EPA Administrator.

Cost

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth:

High rates of bee mortality have created a worrying trend within the U.S. economy. Honey bees help pollinate nearly $15 billion worth of agricultural crops, and pollinators in general pollinate over $24 billion. The loss of bees has forced farmers to turn to pollination services — basically rental bees — which can raise costs by as much as 20%.


The causes of bee deaths have been attributed to several factors, including diseases and viruses. Additionally, the mysterious colony collapse disorder has befuddled researchers as to its cause. Colony collapse symptoms involve bees abandoning their hive and not warding off pests that invade the hive. This leads to the death of the next generation of the hive’s bees, exacerbating the problem.


Researchers have indicated that it will be very difficult to identify if insecticides are negatively impacting bees, as there are other chemicals found in beehives unrelated to insecticides that could also be damaging to their health. Fewer bees died in the winter of 2013 than in the prior year, with only 23.2% of honey bee colonies dying off compared to 30.5%. This could indicate that the problem could be too complex for us to solve.


Media:

Sponsoring Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) Press Release

NPR

Wired

Pesticide Action Network (In Favor)


(Photo Credit: Flickr user www.ForestWander.com)

AKA

Saving America's Pollinators Act of 2013

Official Title

To direct the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to take certain actions related to pesticides that may affect pollinators, and for other purposes.

    save the bees yo
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    Because of the need to show what the insecticide(s) that are killing the pollinators all use of all pollinator killing insecticides should be stopped. Until the specific insecticide that insecticide(s) is shown to be killing these important species is found.
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    No bees? No food.
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    So I have to debate this topic for congress...I've had to do extensive research and all of the scientific research points to the opposite. Yes bees are extremely important to our agriculture, but This bill attacks the wrong chemicals.
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