Thursday, July 10, 2014

Syngenta withdraws application to use banned pesticide linked to bee harm

Rapeseed or oilseed rape (Brassica napus) blooms in Priston,
near Bath, UK. The seeds are treated with neonicotinoid
then planted to repel pests. The crop ispopular with
farmers because of its versatility and ease of growing.
Photograph: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

The Guardian | Jul 4, 2014 | Damian Carrington

Company had asked for emergency exemption to treat up to a third of all oilseed rape in the UK with neonicotinoid

Pesticide maker Syngenta has withdrawn an “emergency” application to use a banned insecticide on up to a third of all oilseed rape in the UK. The U-turn follows a major outcry from green campaigners but the company blamed the government for failing to make a decision in time for crop sowing.

Syngenta’s neonicotinoid pesticide was given a two-year ban by the European Union in 2013 due to research linking it to serious harm in bees. Neonicotinoids are the world’s most widely used insecticide and in June an international scientific review concluded that contamination was so pervasive it threatened global food production.

Syngenta argued that there was a future pest threat to oil seed crops that justified an emergency exemption and the government’s advisory committee on pesticides said the criteria for an exemption had been met, although the evidence of the threat was not made public.

“Following an assessment of the current planting schedule for growers, Syngenta has decided to withdraw its application,” said a company spokesman. “Syngenta was clear that in order to supply the product to British farmers and, importantly, to ensure its effective stewardship, an approval from government was required by the end of June.” The spokesman said the company was considering re-applying in 2015.

Guy Smith, vice president of the National Farmers Union, said: “It is very frustrating that it was not possible for a decision to be made in time for Syngenta to prepare seeds for this year’s planting. This loss of this treatment will make it more complicated to grow oilseed rape this season.” He said the issue had been “heavily politicised” by campaign groups with their “own agenda against pesticide use”.

A spokesman for the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said: “This was a complex application that had to be considered according to EU rules.”

Over 200,000 people protested against Syngenta’s application via the 38 Degrees campaign site, while 35,000 wrote to environment secretary Owen Paterson via Avaaz and another 6,000 Friends of the Earth supporters asked ministers to “stand firm against Syngenta”.

“Our under-threat bees can breathe a bit easier,” said Andrew Pendleton, from Friends of the Earth. “We’re delighted Syngenta has withdrawn this application. The scientific evidence linking neonicotinoid pesticides to bee decline is stacking up. Ministers are currently finalising their action plan for protecting Britain’s bees and it must get tough on all the causes of bee decline, including pesticides.”

Bert Wander, Avaaz campaigner, said: “It’s great news that the huge swarm of protest killed off Syngenta’s attempts to try and keep their bee-killing poisons in Britain’s fields. We welcome their withdrawal and we hope this is the end of it.”

Shadow environment minister Barry Gardiner also welcomed the withdrawal of the application: “It would have driven a coach and horses through the temporary ban put in place to gather scientific evidence. But we need a serious pollinator strategy from government: neonicotinoids are not the only problem.”

1 comment:

  1. 12 Part essay that exposes psychiatry as a bogus science

    Inventor of ADHD: “ADHD is a fictitious disease”

    Co-Founder of DSM admits there is no way to scientifically prove that mentall illness is real

    One year old babies and younger being put on psychiatric drugs

    Psychiatric Drugs Shorten Life Span by 15 years on average

    Psychiatry is based on lies and falsehoods

    Psychiatry is a fake science

    Every human emotion is now a "mental illness"

    Ten Myths about Psychiatric Drugs

    Studies show psychiatric drugs have no benefits and are dangerous

    Psychiatry is now giving 3 year old children drugs

    Psychiatric drugs make you sicker

    A few free eBooks talking about how psychiatry is a massive hoax

    A list of THOUSANDS of psychiatrists who have committed crimes against their patients