We're in court for the bees

Monday, November 19, 2018

Today we’re in court for the bees. Represented by Ecojustice, we’re arguing that Health Canada unlawfully allowed the use of thiamethoxam, a neonicotinoid (neonics) pesticide, in Canada. We’ve fought the government and neonic pesticide companies tooth and nail for three years to get this day in court. Thiamethoxam has been used for more than a decade even when it was unclear if the product was safe for the environment and pollinators. 

The court case began this morning and will last for five days at the Federal Court of Canada in Toronto. We’re tackling this case with our allies Ontario Nature, David Suzuki Foundation and Friends of the Earth. 

Worldwide, the evidence is piling up proving that neonic pesticides are harmful to the environment, insects and in particular, bees. Even Health Canada recently concluded that two neonic pesticides, thiamethoxam and clothianidin, pose unacceptable risks to aquatic invertebrates and have proposed a ban. But Health Canada has failed by allowing this pesticide to be used in the first place, especially before they knew if it was safe or not. 

Since 2013, almost half a million people in Canada have signed a petition to ban neonics (results of combining petitions from 14 environmental groups). The Wilderness Committee alone gathered 10,910 in less than two years. There is an overwhelming amount of pressure on the government to choose the environment, public values and wildlife protection over the desires of big industries. 

We hope the federal government changes its ways but until then we’re in court this week to ensure they start valuing our life-giving biodiversity.

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