Good news for the honey bees that swarm in Eugene, Ore.: the city just became the first in the country to ban the use of neonicotinoid pesticides, one of the types linked to declining honey bee populations.

According to Beyond Pesticides, “several bee-kill incidents occurred in Oregon last summer, including one that killed more than 50,000 bumblebees after a licensed pesticide applicator sprayed blooming linden trees, a violation of the pesticide label. After a preliminary investigation, the Oregon Department of Agriculture confirmed that the massive bee die-off was caused by the use of the neonicotinoid insecticide, dinotefuran.”

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Eugene is just one of many communities looking to prevent incidents like this. In Calif., N.Y., and N.J. similar language is being drafted for proposal that would limit pesticides, particularly the neonicotinoid type.

In addition to the new restrictions on these pesticides, Eugene will also expand its current pesticide-free parks program, and, according to Beyond Pesticides, “now requires all departments to adopt integrated pest management (IPM) standards.”

Pesticides are, in general, harmful to honey bees…as well as humans, pets, the environment…and the list goes on. Cheers to Eugene for realizing this and making some progress in the elimination of these harmful chemicals! We can’t wait to see other states following this precedent soon.

Image source: John Severns / Wikimedia Commons

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