The LRWP is working in partnership with a broad coalition to ban Neonics (neurotoxins that decimate bees and other wildlife populations), to encourage passage of a “Save the Bees” Bill. With nudging from environmental groups around the state, New Jersey’s legislature is poised enact the strongest, smartest restrictions in the country to rein in widespread pollution of the state with neurotoxic neonicotinoid pesticides—or “neonics.” The bill, A2070/S1016, isn’t just good news for New Jersey’s bees, birds, and other wildlife, but also the state’s mostly pollinator-dependent farmers and all residents that value clean water and a healthy environment.
New Jersey’s pollinators are disappearing, with beekeepers losing between 40% to 50% of their colonies annually for most of the last decade. Honeybees are a $7 million industry in New Jersey and—along with wild bees and other pollinators—help pollinate nearly $200 million worth of fruits and vegetables annually. These include some of the state’s most valuable food crops, including blueberries, cherries, apples, peaches, pumpkins, cucumbers, tomatoes, and squash. Rutgers University research indicates many of these crops are “pollinator limited”—meaning a lack of pollinators is already resulting in lower crop yields.
A large and growing body of science confirms that widespread neonic use is a leading cause of pollinator losses and links neonics to declines in birds, the collapse of fisheries, birth defects in white-tailed deer, and a variety of health harms in other mammals, including humans.
Contact your state legislators and tell them to support A2070/S1016 – let’s make New Jersey a model for the nation in protecting our pollinators!