AAPCO is the American Association of Pesticide Control Officers, mainly state personnel charged with overseeing pesticide laws. This is what they are getting from Tom Moriarty, leader of the EPA’s “Bee Team.”
At the March 14 AAPCO meeting, Moriarty reiterated that the agency has found little evidence that a group of systemic pesticides, known as neonicotinoids, have directly caused population decline among bees. While the populations are shrinking, that process started occurring after the chemicals were released, and “that correlation is not nearly as close as some would believe,” Moriarty said.
Moriarty also rejected claims from activists that EPA studies of bees are invalid because they fail to examine the long term effects of the pesticides, among other things. The agency has trouble doing studies on the pollinators because of the cost of field space and the range of the animals. “It’s almost impossible” to have a control environment for a 10 mile radius, which would be needed for a completely controlled study, he said. Moriarty also dissmissed calls to throw out all of the information collected in those studies, arguing that much of it is still relevant.
Thank you, Western Farm Press.