Environment

Saving the honeybee population will save the human race

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Hundreds of honeybees on a frame.

Image: 285313391/Shutterstock

Honeybees might seem like pests who will painfully sting you if you get too close, but did you know that they are essential to human survival? According to Greenpeace , all honeybees pollinate about 80% of the worlds fruits, nuts, and vegetables. Without them, our food supply for the growing population would shrink almost immediately, and the human race would not be able to overcome it. Albert Einstein actually once said, “Mankind will not survive the honeybees’ disappearance for more than five years,” and he was right. The entire honeybee population is dropping at an alarming rate, increasing every year since 2006, and we need to do something.

Causes of honeybee deaths

Scientists have acknowledged that there are many different factors causing the deaths of honeybees—pesticides, drought, habitat destruction, nutrition deficit, air pollution, global warming and more. But one thing stands out: human intervention. The two leading causes of honeybee deaths are pesticides and habitat loss, both resulting from humans. Scientists have found more than 150 different chemical residues in bee pollen, all consequences of pesticide use. Specifically, a Greenpeace scientific report names seven of the pesticides killing bees—including the three nicotine culprits—plus clorpyriphos, cypermethrin, deltamethrin, and fipronil. These chemicals act on the bees nervous system and cause side effects like development defects, weakness, and loss of orientation. All of this hinders the bees ability to produce honey, and eventually weakens or kills it.

Solutions to stop honeybee killing

What can we do? Basically, the answer is found all within human action. Greed and intentional oblivion are to blame for the lack of action taken against this mass species destruction. Humans have all the potential to save the population of themselves, and the bees. Now.

Ban the seven most dangerous pesticides

Poisonous pesticides are a large part of bees dying. If we eliminated the chemicals distributed by companies like Bayer, Syngenta, BASF, Dow, DuPont and Monsanto, we could drastically reduce the amount of bees harmed by them. This is extremely difficult however, since these companies pay millions ($105 million by Syngenta) to cover up their involvement in the approaching bee extinction.

Protect pollinator health by preserving wild habitats

A large number of wild honeybee habitats are destroyed by agribusinesses each year to make room for mono-culture farms, which are then polluted with pesticides. Restoring the habitats for honeybees would be a quick fix, but first we need to fix our absurd and destructive agricultural system.

Restore ecological agriculture

Changing the way we produce crops and livestock is crucial to the future of the planet’s populations. Ecological agriculture involves promoting agricultural diversity and it has many benefits such as restoring soil nutrients, and endless gains from the reduction of pesticides and chemicals. This method of agriculture has been around since the beginning of human existence, so reverting back to it is something that is possible and essential for the preservation of our earth.

Lauren is a part-time editorial and graphic contributor at 301 Digital Media who has a strange obsession with cats and a love for Drake that will never be reciprocated. Follow her on Instagram: @lpetermeyer

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