Government sees resistance from approval of pesticide: The government came under criticism following its conclusion to approve usage of what is supposedly a ‘bee-killing’ pesticide.
The disapproval from environmental groups & Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg crops up after the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) approved a product that contains neonicotinoid to treat sugar beet seed this year.
The EU had initially set a ban on the use of the pesticide.
Matt Shardlow, Chief Executive Officer of conservation group Buglife, stated: “We are very upset, this is an environmentally regressive decision by Defra, destroying wildflowers in the countryside to prevent them transferring insecticides to bees, is obviously beyond the pale.
“In addition, no action is proposed to prevent the pollution of rivers with insecticides applied to sugar beet. Nothing has changed scientifically since the decision to ban neonics from use on sugar beet in 2018, they are still going to harm the environment.
“The new question is how will the increased use of herbicides on field margins and hedgerows add to the onslaught being experienced by insect populations.”
Discussing on the reports, Greta Thunberg said on Twitter: “UK Government has announced a ‘bee-killing pesticide so poisonous that is banned by the EU’ may be used in England.
“New coal mines and pesticides, the UK’s so-called ‘green industrial revolution‘ is off to a great start’.
Defra noted sugar beet seedlings are defenseless to predation by aphids that have the capability to spread beet yellows virus.
Aphids are insects that damage crops by sucking the fluids from plants.
Reported in official figures, sugar beet crops have been harshly impacted and 2020 yields are predicted to be down by as much as 25% in comparison to previous years.
Defra made clear the neonicotinoid Syngenta’s Cruiser SB will offer emergency protection while the beet industry builds alternative solutions. It further explained that the pesticide’s exceptional use will be strictly monitored.
A Defra spokesperson stated: “Emergency authorisations for pesticides are only granted in exceptional circumstances where diseases or pests cannot be controlled by any other reasonable means. Emergency authorisations are used by countries across Europe.
“Pesticides can only be used where we judge there to be no harm to human health and animal health and no unacceptable risks to the environment. The temporary use of this product is strictly limited to a non-flowering crop and will be tightly controlled to minimise any potential risk to pollinators.”
Government sees resistance from approval of pesticide