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Greening the Community, 28th National Pesticide Forum: New Speakers, Garden Tour

(Beyond Pesticides, February 3, 2010) Beyond Pesticides has confirmed exciting additions to Greening the Community, the 28th National Pesticide Forum, scheduled for April 9-10 at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. The Forum is an important opportunity to discuss the latest information on pesticides and alternatives, meet scientists and community leaders, and network with other activists working to change policies at the local, state and national levels.

David Hackenberg, the beekeeper who first discovered a mysterious disappearance of honeybees now known as colony collapse disorder (CCD), is the most recent addition to the program. Mr. Hackenberg believes that pesticides contribute to CCD and that honeybees are a barometer of the environment. Featured in several films and news investigations, he has been front and center in this important fight to protect our pollinators. Read about Mr. Hackenberg and the other Forum speakers in the highlights below.

The Forum will begin Friday afternoon with a tour of the Cleveland Botanical Garden. Founded in 1930, Cleveland Botanical Garden, which is now made up of 20 specialty gardens and exotic indoor biomes, has evolved into a community treasure. The Garden’s community involvement extends beyond its 10 acres into city neighborhoods through its Green Corps program, which has enlightened area youth with the opportunities of urban farming. Although the tour is included in the cost of registration, space is limited. Please RSVP to Beyond Pesticides if you plan to attend the tour.

Registration is $65 for members, $75 for non-members and $35 for students, and includes all speakers, sessions and organic food and drink. A limited number of scholarships are available. Register by March 9 to avoid late registration fee.

Forum highlights:

Organic Gardening and Farming
— Rodale Institute’s organic farm and garden expert Jeff Moyer. Mr. Moyer and Rodale have helped countless farmers make the transition to organic methods, and have also shown that organic methods combat climate change.
— Local farmers market and community garden organizers.

Thinking Beyond Your Plate
— Registered dietitian, investigative nutritionist and award-winning “Food Sleuth” journalist Melinda Hemmelgarn.

Cutting Edge Health Science
— Top university researchers in endocrine disruption, genetics, cancer, learning disabilities, birth defects and much more. Presenters include: Paul Winchester, PhD; Shuk-mei Ho, PhD; Michael Skinner, PhD; and Warren Porter, PhD.

Lawn Pesticide Bans and Organic Landscapes
Jan Kasperski of the Ontario College of Family Physicians and Theresa McClenaghan of the Canadian Environmental Law Association who played a key roles in successfully banning lawn pesticides in Canada.
— National experts in organic, pesticide-free lawn care.

Protecting Pollinators
David Hackenberg, the beekeeper who first discovered a mysterious disappearance of honeybees now known as colony collapse disorder. Mr. Hackenberg, who is featured in the films Vanishing of the Bees and Nicotine Bees, has served as president of the American Beekeeping Federation and sits on the National Honey Board.

The Forum is convened by Beyond Pesticides, CWRU School of Medicine’s Swetland Center for Environmental Health and Beyond Pesticides Ohio; and co-sponsored by Bioneers Cleveland, Cleveland Botanical Garden, Cleveland Food Co-Op, Earth Day Coalition, EcoWatch, Environmental Health Watch, GreenCityBlueLake Institute, Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, Neighborhood Progress, North Union Farmers Market, Northeast OH Sierra Club, Northern OH Wellness Connection, and OH Environmental Council.

For more information and to register, visit www.beyondpesticides.org/forum.


2 Responses to “Greening the Community, 28th National Pesticide Forum: New Speakers, Garden Tour”

  1. 1
    Dan Detard Says:

    Mr Hackenberg participated in a beekeeper designed experiment with Bayer this past season. The results where shown at the recent American Bee Federation (ABF) conference in Orlando.

    Long story short: 12 colonies placed in orange grove, 12 control colonies placed a few miles away not in a grove.

    Hives in oranges got sprayed along with trees in bloom with new Bayer product Movento.

    No loss of larva or bees was seen in the orange grove hives. There was no apparent difference 2-3 months out in each group.

    Here is the kicker; all but 2 of the hives were dead at the end of the summer due to the rigors of cross country migratory pollination.

    Take home story: beekeepers do a much better job killing off their bees then Bayer. I wonder what Bayer thought of that debacle?

    Regardless of how you want to spin it – the ovewelming body of published science independent and Bayer sponsored shows the Bayer systemics to be benign to honeybee health.

    certain segments of the industry refuse to accept this while they dump 2 to 3 miticide chemical treatments into their hive per year.

    While no real science backs the claim that Bayer chems are killing bees we have several good studies now that show Apistan and Checkmite approved for mite treatments harm the reproductive health of honeybees and also weakens their immune system.

    I am a full time beekeeper and am appalled at the hypocritical game these beekeepers are playing with miticides versus Bayer chems. Various environmental groups are now being used as tools to come to the side of the “poor” beekeepers. what a crock!

  2. 2
    Beyond Pesticides Says:

    We spoke to Mr. David Hackenberg about this particular study that was funded by Bayer CropScience and presented by the American Bee Federation in which he participated. He said that this study was a problematic one that was designed one way but then changed half way through, and what was supposed to be a year-long study was cut short when CCD effects were not immediately observed. Mr. Hackenberg also indicated that the dead bees that he has counted in his hive don’t match up to what was indicated in Bayer’s study.

    The fact that Bayer, the manufacturer of one of the implicated pesticides in CCD, imidacloprid, has funded this study, which dismisses the pesticide’s link, comes as no surprise. According to scientists in France following massive bee die-offs like CCD, Bayer also used studies flawed in both design and execution to create a sense of uncertainty surrounding imidacloprid’s toxicity to bees. Bayer produced reports that were not peer-reviewed indicating that bees would not be adversely affected by imidacloprid. Peer-reviewed studies showed effects of imidacloprid at much lower levels than Bayer acknowledged.

    Research is ongoing as to the cause of the CCD phenomenon, but pesticides, especially neonictinoids such as imidacloprid, have been implicated. CCD can be especially devastating since honeybees are essential pollinators of crops that constitute over one third of the U.S. food supply or $15 billion worth of food. For more information on pollinators and CCD, read our factsheet: Pollinators and Pesticides: Escalating crisis demands action. http://www.beyondpesticides.org/infoservices/pesticidesandyou/Fall08/pollinators.pdf

    Beyond Pesticides believes that pesticides are likely to be a part of the CCD equation and a precautionary approach must be taken. Solutions to the loss of bees and human productivity are clearly within our reach if we engage our communities and governmental bodies. We know how to live in harmony with the ecosystem through the adoption of sustainable practices that simply do not allow toxic pesticide use. Because our survival depends on healthy pollinators, we must do everything in our power to solve this problem.

    Read other Daily News Blog postings on pollinators and pesticides. http://www.beyondpesticides.org/dailynewsblog/?cat=93

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