Beleid en debat

Fates of humans and insects intertwined, warn scientists

The “fates of humans and insects are intertwined”, scientists have said, with the huge declines reported in some places only the “tip of the iceberg”. The warning has been issued by 25 experts from around the world, who acknowledge that little is known about most of the estimated 5.5 million insect species. However, enough was understood to warrant immediate action, they said, because waiting for better data would risk irreversible damage.

Nederland blijft in biologische landbouw flink achter op andere Europese landen

Op donderdag 13 februari is op de BIOFACH, de internationale vakbeurs voor b­iologische voeding, bekend gemaakt dat de biologische landbouw wereldwijd met 2,0 miljoen hectare is gegroeid. 2018 was daarmee opnieuw een recordjaar voor de biologische sector. Ook de biologische detailhandel bereikte een record, de wereldwijde markt passeerde de grens van 100 miljard dollar (USD), zo blijkt uit de studie "The World of Organic Agriculture" over 2018 van de FiBL en IFOAM, met gegevens uit 186 landen.

Time-Dependent Toxicity Related to Short-Term Peaks of Contaminant Release

Short-term peaks of contaminant concentrations and flows go undetected at many minesites. Recent biological studies have shown that short peaks can contribute significantly to toxicity due to aspects like damage per unit of time, accumulating damage through time, damage at any concentration, temporally aligned or offset synergistic and antagonistic interactions, and slowly reversible or non-reversible uptake and binding of some metals and other elements.

Neonics Are ‘Hollowing Out Ecosystems,’ N.R.D.C. Reports

Neonicotinoid insecticides, also known as neonics, are doing more than killing bees and other insects in record numbers, according to a report issued last month by the Natural Resources Defense Council, an international environmental advocacy group. Neonics, the council says, are contaminating New York State’s soil and water and “hollowing out ecosystems from the bottom up.”

Bumblebees are dying across North America and Europe

Bumblebee populations in North America and Europe have plummeted, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Science. The number of areas populated by bumblebees has fallen 46 percent in North America and 17 percent in Europe. The loss of bumblebee populations is alarming because they play a central role in pollinating many plants, including key crops such as tomatoes and cranberries.

Iconic mayfly populations have declined by as much as 84 percent

The emergence of Hexagenia limbata mayflies, throughout the Great Lakes and parts of the mid-Atlantic region, is nearly a religious event in angling circles. Each year in early June, these enormous mayflies blanket the landscape, emerging by the billions each night, smothering waterways, riverbanks, roadways and more with thousands of tons of trout-candy biomass. Not long ago, these historic and essential emergences were almost wiped out. By 1970, Hexagenia were gone from large swaths of the Midwest.

Het is de EU de afgelopen 10 jaar niet gelukt risico’s van bestrijdingsmiddelen te beperken

Pesticiden kunnen schadelijk zijn voor mens en milieu, maar het is de Europese Unie de afgelopen tien jaar nauwelijks gelukt de risico’s terug te dringen. Ook schiet de handhaving ernstig tekort. Boerenbedrijven in overtreding worden nauwelijks of niet beboet. Dat concludeert de Europese Rekenkamer in een rapport. Het onderzoek van de Rekenkamer vond plaats in Nederland, Frankrijk en Litouwen.

Germany's breeding bird population in significant decline

The breeding bird population in Germany declined by around 14 million or eight percent over the period between 1992 and 2016, the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) said on Wednesday. The "significant decline" in the number of native birds in meadows, pastures and fields has been continuing, according to an evaluation of thousands of data sets by the agency. "In the open agricultural landscapes, the population of breeding pairs has declined by about two million over a quarter of a century," BfN President Beate Jessel said.

Bayer attempts to discredit peer-reviewed study showing its products caused a Japan fishery to collapse

The May 2019 newsletter of the Saitama Ecosystem Conservation Society describes how, before the introduction of neonicotinoids in the 1990s, numberless brilliant red akiakane or autumn darter dragonflies could be seen around rice fields in the fall. Experiments by Japanese dragonfly expert Tetsuyuki Ueda of Ishikawa Prefectural University showed how the pesticides reduced the number of surviving dragonfly nymphs to a small fraction, and that the chemicals persist for years in the soil of rice paddy fields.