Stop Neonic Pesticides: Support AB 2146 and Save Pollinators
California is a biodiversity hotspot. Of the 3,600 bee species native to North America, California is home to 1,600. Pollinators need plants and plants need pollinators. This ancient bond is especially crucial in California, where one-third of our plants are found nowhere else in the world.
Neonicotinoid insecticides, also known as “neonics,” are neurotoxins. Overwhelming scientific evidence shows that neonics are a leading cause of bee and other pollinator declines. Even trace amounts of neonics kill bees, and have a variety of sublethal effects that make it difficult for surviving bees to maintain colonies and reproduce. Asm. Member Rebecca Bauer-Kahan of the San Francisco Bay Area has introduced AB 2146, which bans the use of imidacloprid, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, dinotefuran, and acetamiprid on non-agricultural crops.
What you should know
From the imperiled monarch butterfly to the fuzzy bumblebee, the health of pollinators is directly tied to the integrity of plants. Neonicotinoids are the world’s most widely used insecticides and are incredibly toxic to pollinators—just one square foot of grass treated with a typical neonic lawn product can contain enough neonics to kill one million bees. Most of the chemicals, however, stay in the soil, where they remain for years and are easily carried by rain or lawn watering.
The devastating effects
Neonics broadly contaminate California’s environment, threatening the collapse of entire ecosystems. State water testing has detected neonics in the vast majority of samples statewide, including 92% of samples in urban areas of Southern California. And they are found at levels that likely harm aquatic life, killing insects and other invertebrates and starving the birds, fish, and other species that rely on them for food.
The Status of AB 2146
We’re thrilled to report that AB 2146 has passed the California legislature. Now the bill is with Governor Newsom. Please join us in respectfully asking Governor Newsom to say “yes” to AB 2146. See our fact sheet for additional talking points.
“Bees are the backbone of our state’s ecosystem,” said Assemblymember Rebecca Bauer-Kahan, who introduced AB 2146. “California is far behind other states and countries in limiting these highly toxic chemicals. We must address the home and garden uses that seriously threaten ecological and human health.”