PLANET recently requested its members to contact Congress and ask for support of pollinator legislation, H.R. 5447, which would require the EPA to expedite the approval of pesticide products designed to control pests that impact bee health including the Varroa mite. A general scientific consensus is emerging that the arthropod is a significant factor in bee colony collapse.
Tom Delaney, director of government affairs at PLANET, periodically updates members with legislative issues. As such, this statement was sent to members, "We need your help with bringing this legislation to the attention of legislators. Please take a few minutes to write to your member of Congress and ask him or her to support H.R. 5447. Additional support for the legislation is needed to encourage congressional action, and we hope that the House Agriculture Committee will consider this legislation when it reconvenes in November."
Over the past year or so, much of the blame for the loss of managed bee colonies has been attributed to the use of neonicotinoids. Recently, 60 House Democrats sent a letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) asking for tighter restrictions on neonicotinoid products. However, general scientific consensus is emerging that the Varroa mite, in association with a range of honeybee viruses, is a significant factor in these losses.
Rep. Austin Scott, Chairman of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology, and Foreign Agriculture has introduced pollinator legislation (H.R. 5447) that would require the EPA to expedite the approval of pesticide products to control the Varroa mite and other pests that impact bee health, and to report to Congress on its efforts. It would also require the USDA to report to Congress on the factors that threaten the health of managed bees, including pests, disease, habitat, beekeeper practices, and nutritional needs.
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