There’s growing evidence that pesticides are killing off bees, but so far the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hasn’t done much about it. Friends of the Earth joined with beekeepers, farmers, and other organizations to speak up for the bees. They’ve been on a Keep The Hives Alive Tour throughout the United States, and this week will rally at EPA headquarters, along with 2.64 million dead bees.
40 percent of honeybee hives in the United States perish every year, according to Friends of the Earth, which costs the beekeeping and farming industries over $2 billion each year. As part of the Keep The Hives Alive Tour, the environmental group has been touring the country with beekeepers and farmers who have been affected, with stops in California, South Dakota, Minnesota, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina – the tour also includes a rally at Bayer’s North American Headquarters. Their last stop will be Washington, D.C during National Pollinator Week.
Related: 57 different pesticides discovered in poisoned honey bees
On June 22, beekeepers, farmers, scientists, and activists will meet at EPA headquarters with a truck filled with 2.64 million dead bees to demonstrate the effects of the agency’s inaction. They’ll deliver a petition (you can still sign it here) that includes over three million signatures and calls on the EPA to restrict the use of these harmful chemicals that likely hurt not only bees, but other pollinators like butterflies, bats, and birds.
You can join the rally at EPA headquarters on 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW; it starts at 1:30 PM. You can also donate to the tour or sign the petition. Friends of the Earth food futures campaigner Tiffany Finck-Haynes said in a Medium post, “Grassroots actions will help us push the Environmental Protection Agency to do its job and restrict pollinator-toxic pesticides.”
+ Keep The Hives Alive
Images via U.S. Geological Survey on Flickr and Keep The Hives Alive Facebook