The Dangers of Neonicotinoid Pesticides

Recent studies have highlighted many possible dangers of neonicotinoid pesticides. These systemic, persistent chemicals are harming bees — and they may be harming us, too.

February/March 2014

By Shelley Stonebrook

Flying Honey Bee

Named for their chemical structure, which is similar to that of nicotine, neonicotinoids are systemic pesticides, meaning they’re in every part of a plant. Evidence linking these neonicotinoid pesticides to the honeybee decline known as colony collapse disorder has been mounting. Now, new research suggests residues could be harmful to humans.

Not only are neonicotinoid pesticides systemic, they’re also extraordinarily persistent. Research shows these pesticides can persist in the soil for more than a decade. Neonicotinoids are widely used on corn, soy, canola, sugar beets, wheat, ornamentals and more. While many countries have banned neonicotinoid pesticides, they are still in widespread use in the United States. Learn more about these dangerous chemicals:



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