The die-off of bees and other pollinators poses an enormous threat to our food and agriculture system and environment. A growing body of scientific evidence points to neonicotinoids (neonics), a class of systemic pesticides, as a primary cause of the massive decline of bees. Last year the EU imposed a moratorium on certain neonics, and a broader review of harmful pesticides is underway. Environmental and agriculture organizations are pushing for a ban in the U.S. at both the state and federal levels, and several cities have already banned neonics.
This progress could be undermined by the push in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) to harmonize standards down to the lowest level. Civil society groups in the EU point to a “regulatory freeze” that is blocking progress on endocrine disruptor and neonic regulation. TTIP negotiations also threaten the EU’s use of the Precautionary Principle, which strengthens their ability to protect public health and the environment when there is scientific uncertainty. TTIP could also affect the growing number of U.S. city and state-level regulations on neonics.
Jennifer Sass, Senior Scientist, Natural Resources Defense Council
Jim Kleinschmit, Director, Climate and Energy Initiatives, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
Martin Dermine, Honeybee Project Coordinator, Pesticide Action Network Europe
Robert Pederson, Agriculture and Rural Convention 2020 (ARC2020)
Karen Hansen-Kuhn, Director International Strategies, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
This is the fourth in a series of webinars in partnership with ARC2020 on TTIP, agriculture and food systems. Recordings of the previous webinars: Trade rules for poultry and pork: safe for whom?, TTIP and GMOs, and TTIP and Antibiotic Resistance are available at http://www.iatp.org/video or on youtube.