Washington D.C. (August 7, 2014) – Center for Food Safety (CFS) today congratulates Vermont Law School on becoming the first higher-education campus in the country to receive neonicotinoid-free designation. Vermont Law School received the recognition from the BEE Protective Campaign led by Center for Food Safety and Beyond Pesticides.
“This is a historic day for pollinators,” said Larissa Walker, Pollinator Campaign Director at Center for Food Safety. “For the first time, a major university is taking steps to provide a sanctuary for the bees. Pollinators are too important to wait for the situation to get worse. We applaud Vermont Law School and thank them for their leadership. We look forward to many more institutions joining the movement and pledging to go neonic-free.”
“Honey bees and other pollinators play a critical role in agricultural systems,” said Laurie Ristino, director of the Center for Agriculture and Food Systems and VLS associate professor of law. “Protecting their health and safety is a reflection of Vermont Law School’s commitment to the environment and CAFS’ mission to support sustainable food and agricultural systems. We hope more will follow our lead.”
BEE Protective is a national campaign established by Center for Food Safety and Beyond Pesticides, and works with municipalities, campuses, and homeowners to adopt policies that protect pollinators from bee-toxic pesticides. For more information about the campaign, visit http://bit.ly/1kp3gSV.
One in every three bites of food depends on bees for pollination, and the annual value of pollination services worldwide are estimated at over $125 billion. In the United States, pollination contributes $20-30 billion in agricultural production annually.
In December 2013, the European Union began a two-year moratorium on three of the most widely used neonicotinoids. Yet the U.S. EPA has refused to take timely action.