Neonicotinoids: Is a Total Ban in Sight ? CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS DEBATES – INTERVIEWS
The conference "Neonicotinoids: Is a Total Ban in Sight? ", organised by the NGO POLLINIS, was held on Tuesday, 7 November, 2017 at the European Parliament in Brussels. The event brought together five leading scientists who presented their recent work on the impact of these pesticides on bees and ecosystems.
The conference “Neonicotinoids: Is a Total Ban in Sight? “, organised by the NGO POLLINIS, was held on Tuesday, 7 November, 2017 at the European Parliament in Brussels. Supported by Eric Andrieu, French MEP and S&D Spokesman for Agriculture and Rural Development in Parliament, the event brought together five leading scientists who presented their recent work on the impact of these pesticides on bees and ecosystems: Hans de Kroon, Caspar Hallmann, Peter Neumann, Fabio Sgolastra, and Jean-Marc Bonmatin.
The time is right: EFSA, the European Health Agency, is preparing to publish its study report on neonicotinoids. The Commission will also submit a legislative proposal to the Member States for a vote before the end of the year. In the summer of 2016, France already adopted a total ban on these active substances, which is due to enter into force in September 2018.
Neonicotinoids are a class of neurotoxic insecticides (which attack the central nervous system of insects, causing paralysis and death). There are seven (acetamiprid, clothianidin, dinotefuran, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, thiacloprid, thiamethoxam), these active molecules appeared in the 1990s and are today the most common type of insecticide used in Europe on field crops (corn, rapeseed, sunflower, but also beetroot, potatoes, etc.). These pesticides are broad-spectrum – they kill all arthropods indiscriminately – and are systemic: they are transported by the sap of the plant into pollen and nectar as it grows.
While the fate of these neurotoxins is being decided in Europe, the researchers faced with the massive disappearance of insects have called on the European Union to take urgent measures.
POLLINIS is an independent, non-profit NGO that works exclusively through donations from citizens, to protect honey bees and wild bees, and for an agriculture that respects all pollinators. Since its foundation in 2012, the NGO has been calling for a total prohibition on neonicotinoids in Europe. They have submitted a petition to this effect with more than 1.3 million signatories to the European Parliament and the European Commission.