Update on neonicotinoids and bee welfare

Karin Smyth MP is often asked about the main issues raised by her constituents in Bristol South. One of the issues which continues to be of major importance is the use of neonicotinoid insecticides and their impact on the bee population.

She has recently written to the constituents who have contacted her in the past about the issue with the following update:

The Government has so far been unclear on its position with regard to restrictions on the use of neonicotinoids on crops after the UK leaves the European Union.

Shortly before the Parliamentary summer recess, the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs Secretary Michael Gove stated that UK government policy on neonicotinoid pesticides would “follow both existing EU protections” and be “enhanced in line with the science”.

He said that he had paid “close attention” to the large-scale scientific study published in June by the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, which found evidence that neonicotinoid pesticides may indeed harm bee populations. He went on to say that the Government aims “to ensure that our bee population and our pollinators are protected”.

This is certainly a positive step in helping promote the welfare of our bee population, but we must equally all guard against complacency and I will therefore continue to support calls for the Government to introduce or maintain a full and permanent ban on neonicotinoids after Brexit.

To read the House of Commons exchange in full click here

If constituents have any more concerns about bee-harming neonicotinoids or any other issues, they are always welcome to contact Karin.