SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Mat Mathews, PR.com Newswire, David Smith, Tim Crawford, Kevin Benedict

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New Four-Year Scientific Analysis: Systemic Pesticides Pose Global Threat to Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services

OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 06/23/14 -- The conclusions of a new meta-analysis of the systemic pesticides neonicotinoids and fipronil confirm that they are causing significant damage to a wide range of beneficial invertebrate species and are a key factor in the decline of bees.

Concern about the impact of systemic pesticides on a variety of beneficial species has been growing for the last 20 years but the science has not been considered conclusive until now.

Undertaking a full analysis of all the available literature (800 peer reviewed reports) the Task Force on Systemic Pesticides -- a group of global, independent scientists -- has found that there is clear evidence of harm sufficient to trigger regulatory action.

The analysis, known as the Worldwide Integrated Assessment (WIA), to be published in the peer reviewed Journal Environmental Science and Pollution Research, finds that neonics pose a serious risk of harm to honeybees and other pollinators such as butterflies and to a wide range of other invertebrates such as earthworms and vertebrates such as birds.

Dr Jean-Marc Bonmatin of The National Centre for Scientific Research in France, a lead author of the WIA, will speak at a press conference(i) in Ottawa Wednesday June 25th. He says: "The evidence is very clear. We are witnessing a threat to the productivity of our natural and farmed environment equivalent to that posed by organophosphates or DDT. Far from protecting food production the use of neonics is threatening the very infrastructure which enables it, imperilling the pollinators, habitat engineers and natural pest controllers at the heart of a functioning ecosystem."

The authors strongly suggest that regulatory agencies apply more precautionary principles and further tighten regulations on neonicotinoids and fipronil and start planning for a global phase-out or at least a strong reduction of the global scale of use.

More at www.tfsp.info



(i)NOTES
Press conference: Wednesday 25 June, 10:00 AM
Charles-Lynch Press Gallery, Room 130S, Centre Block, Parliament Hill,
Ottawa
Media Briefing notes available on request.

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