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Pollinators are vitally important to Oregon
Pollinators are essential for Oregon’s vibrant agricultural sector, supporting over $600 million of insect-pollinated crops grown by Oregon farmers each year. Their crops include small fruits such as blueberries, marionberries, loganberries, and black raspberries; tree fruits such as apples, pears, and cherries; as well as watermelon and seed for crimson clover, red clover, and alfalfa. All of this farm production depends heavily on the pollination services of both European honey bees and native pollinators such as bumble bees. These bees also ensure that Oregon home gardeners can produce fruit, vegetables, and flowers.
Furthermore, pollinators play a central role in maintaining a healthy environment. Pollinators help 85% of plants to reproduce and they are responsible for the abundant nuts, seeds, and fruit that feed wildlife, from birds to bears.
Bee Kills Demonstrate the Need to Take Action
In Oregon, at least half a dozen neonicotinoid insecticide applications in the summers of 2013 and 2014 caused the death of nearly a 100,000 bumble bees representing hundreds of colonies. Poisoning incidents occurred in Beaverton, Eugene, Wilsonville and other cities. High-profile investigations by the Oregon Department of Agriculture implicated dinotefuran in two of the kills and a closely related pesticide, imidacloprid, in the others. These insecticides, along with clothianidin and thiamethoxam, are neonicotinoids, the most widely used group of insecticides in the world. They are highly toxic to honey bees, as well as many native pollinators, including bumble bees.
What YOU can do…
Read about the consumer-driven campaigns we’re working on in coalition with national organizations like Friends of The Earth. These campaigns are targeting the CEOs of national retailers that sell products containing neonicotinoid pesticides, most recently Ace and True Value Hardware stores.
Beyond Toxics is dedicated to protecting public health and the environment from toxic pesticides. We do so by educating the public, working with local beekeepers, and advocating for change in policies and laws to protect bees. Your action and the actions of your neighbors today will set the standard for business and government tomorrow.
First row: 1) “Pollen Bath” – Photo by Samara Howell, 2) No title – Photo by Cole Keister
Second row: 3) “Bee seeing you!” Photo by Marie Sweeten, 4) “BumbleBee on Milkweed” – Photo by Danielle Tinker
Third row: 5) “Bee on Purple Flower” – Photo by Dylan Byrnes, 6) “Call Dibs On This Sunflower” – Photo by Judit Covarrubias Garcia
There’s an important way to help our work to save Oregon’s bees! Become a member of Beyond Toxics TODAY!
Beyond Toxics is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all contributions are fully tax-deductible. Please
consider giving a gift of a Beyond Toxics membership to a friend or family member!
- Recommended resources
- Background: The threat to bees
- Read about Cultivating Bee-Friendly Gardens
- Read about Consumer Products to Avoid
- Take action to help Save Oregon’s Bees!
- Beyond Toxics blogs about the decline of bees and the dangers of neonicotinoid pesticides
- What are neonicotinoid pesticides?
- Read about the economics of saving bees: Bees by the numbers
- Gardeners Beware 2014 Report
- Read about Eugene, Oregon’s ban on neonicotinoid pesticides, the first of it’s kind in the nation
- Join Beyond Toxics
- Contact us
Beyond Toxics is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all contributions are fully tax-deductible. Please consider giving a gift of a Beyond Toxics membership to a friend or family member!