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PAN Europe: Fipronil – European ban on bee-killing insecticides goes on

On 16 July 2013, Member States voted in favour of the EU Commission’s proposal to ban fipronil, an insecticide that EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) identified as a neurotoxic for bees. Pesticides Action Network Europe (PAN-E) welcomed the vote of the Standing Committee on Phytopharmaceuticals.

The proposal to ban fipronil for all crops except for a few horticultural or greenhouses use is a good step forward to issue regulation to protect bees. Nevertheless, biodiversity would not be fully protected by this proposal since the use in greenhouses would still be authorised.

Data show that surface waters surrounding greenhouses remains highly contaminated by systemic pesticides. Furthermore, minor uses for leek or onion seed coating would still be authorised. Besides this proposal, neonicotinoids remain authorised, despite high concerns on their impact on bees’ health.

PAN Europe recommends imposing a full ban on systemic insecticides in order to reach a high degree of protection for bees and the environment.

Originally posted on 7 October 2013

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