Friday, October 15, 2010

Bees, Bayer and the Big Pharma Fakeout

Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) wiped out an estimated one-third of the U.S. honeybee population, and scientists are scrambling to find out why.  A good percentage, however, seem to be able to resist the lure of Bayer, the multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical company that is funding their research on viruses and fungus, but not on neonicotinoids, a class of pesticides manufactured by Bayer that many suspect is confusing bees and making them more susceptible to disease.  Here's an article that explains it all in detail, and how this important info was omitted from a front-page New York Times piece that ran last year about the breakthrough research that got everyone all excited. 

Then, in January, we learned that the U.S. Environmental Protection agency knew all along that this chemical was toxic to bees, but is allowing it to be produced and distributed anyway.  How's that for "protection"?   Their advice to growers?  "Read the labels." 
Somehow, the idea of putting the planet’s growing systems at risk, so that Bayer can continue to do business irresponsibly is especially disturbing.  It’s not like the earth can choose to take a drug only after reading the studies and weighing the various risks and side effects.  We are currently experiencing a side effect that could have serious consequences on our farms and in our forests. It would be nice to see this conflict of interest exposed further in the mainstream media, and the use of this pesticide curtailed, as it has been in several European countries, until more facts are known.

There's a "buzz" about this film!
 I'm looking forward to learning more on Sunday, July 17 at 2:00 pm, when "Queen of the Sun" will be shown at Fellowship of Reconciliation, 521 North Broadway, Nyack, NY. 

(This post has been re-written and re-posted.  It was originally written in Oct. 2010, but disappeared from my blog. )

7 comments:

Joanne said...

Bees are so critical to our crops, even the backyard ones. I plant marigolds around the border of my vegetable garden to invite the bees close, to help pollinate the vegetable plants. A dwindling of the bee populations cannot be a good thing for any of us.

TALON said...

I've been following the collapse of bee colonies for the last few years and if they can find a definitive reason, that would be remarkable. And if a huge corporation would take responsibility and put the earth's needs above the needs of money, that would be a miracle!

tina said...

Those chemicals can be scary.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

If bees are succeptible to certain chemical,human too should be affected. It is just we don't see them in short term effect. I read in newpaper that cancer is a fairly recent disease due to now human environment and lifestyle. A research compare with a number of old bones or mummies in different past era shows that cancer is a very rare thing in the past.

chamomilla said...

I have read that bats in the U.S. have also been plagued with some mysterious disease (white nose disease), and some are linking it to the use of pesticides. Everything is interconnected and humans cannot get away with the damage they consciously do to nature for more profit... Unfortunately those who are responsible don't seem to care.

Carol said...

Great and important post! Let's hope the real killers will be found out and made to pay. More importantly made to change their dangerous chemical ways. I am preparing a wild honeybee post ... I was so glad to see your post! It is a great joy to me that a hive has been living and swarming here for years. ;>)

Pam at HMG said...

I was really surprised to read the NYT article and thought to myself, what about all the information on pesticides and their role in Colony Collapse. Thanks for the article link. Of course, not surprised that there are larger interest groups that manipulate the news.