In recent years, we’ve become very familiar with the impact that pesticides are having on honey bees. With bee populations dropped at a steady 30 percent rate annually, research scientists have come to the conclusion that neonicotinoid pesticides are largely to blame for occurrences of Colony Collapse Disorder.  While the impact that the chemicals we spray on our food is having on bees is widely understood, it seems that these insects aren’t the only victims.

Federal regulators of the Environmental Protection Agency announced on Tuesday that they would ban registration of all products containing flubendiamide. This pesticide compound, in particular, breaks down into a more toxic chemical that is harmful to insects. The kicker is many of these insects are eaten by fish and as they disappear, it is causing massive marine die offs as well. Not only are neonicotinoid pesticides decimating pollinator populations, but it appears that this other group of insecticides are also causing far-reaching harm to our ecosystem.


Hopefully, with this new ban, the circulation of products with this toxic pesticide will decrease and eventually come to a complete halt. Some farmers, particularly almond farmers, who rely heavily on flubendiamide, are not very happy with the ban but environmental activists are focused on the bigger picture. It seems a bit ridiculous to compromise an entire ecosystem for the sake of high crop yields. We often forget that we are intrinsically tied into these large systems and that when one part is disrupted, it will inevitably have a ripple effect and impact on us. We are pleased to see the EPA recognize this potential danger in banning these chemicals and hope that this is the first of many other positive moves to protect animals and insects, as well as our food supply.

Image source: jetsandzeppelin/Flickr