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American beekeepers, conservation groups and food campaigners have filed a lawsuit against the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for failing to protect the country’s bees from toxic pesticides. Three quarters of the country’s crops rely on bees for pollination, according to The Guardian, yet the EPA is accused of rushing bee-toxic pesticide registrations despite a suite of scientific reviews that have identified neonicotinoids as a serious threat to declining bee populations.

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The European Union (EU) recently failed to suspend the use of neocotinoids due to a hung vote, The Guardian reports, but Tonio Borg, the European commissioner for health and consumer policy, told the paper that he intends to appeal. “The health of our bees is of paramount importance,” said Borg. “We have a duty to take proportionate yet decisive action to protect them wherever appropriate.”

The US coalition, which includes groups such as the Sierra Club and the Center for Environmental Health, is represented by the Center for Food Safety. Attorney Peter Jenkins explained that the coalition has frequently warned the EPA about the importance of protecting bee populations but they have ignored such appeals, leading the group no choice but to file suit in a Federal district court. Clothranidin manufactured by Bayer and Thramethoxam manufactured by Syngenta are among the pesticides identified as particularly dangerous to bees.

The EPA claims it has pursued an aggressive campaign to protect bees and that they are currently reviewing registrations, while Crop Life America (CLA), which represents the companies accused of manufacturing bee-toxic products, insists that “Neonicotinoids are thoroughly tested and monitored for potential risks to the environment and various beneficial species, including honeybees.”

Via The Guardian