Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Bee A Pollinator Hero!

On December 16th, tell the Minnesota Department of Agriculture:
Be a #MNpollinatorhero!

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has shown its interest in pollinator health by launching a review of neonicotinoids and calling on every Minnesotan to be a #MNpollinatorhero. On December 16th, join us in calling on MDA to become a true #MNpollinatorhero by restricting or suspending neonicotinoid pesticides, which are a driving cause of pollinator losses.

When: Tuesday, December 16th, 11am
Where: Minnesota Department of Agriculture
  Meet at East Columbus Ave & Central Park Ave E, St Paul, MN
  **parking and transit directions are below**

What: We'll gather outside MDA for a few brief speakers & colorful performances (please come bundled and ready for about 20 minutes outside!). Then, we'll march together into the MDA building to deliver a basket of pollinator-dependent foods that grow here in Minnesota. This basket represents our gratitude for the work that MDA has done so far, and our hopes that the Agency will suspend neonics in its current review.
*Please wear yellow, orange, and black if you can; bee and butterfly costumes and bee suits are encouraged!*

Why: Pollinators are in trouble. In recent years, Minnesota beekeepers have lost upwards of 50% of their honey bee colonies annually. Native bees and butterflies are also facing dangerous decline. These losses threaten Minnesota's agricultural economy, including many delicious Minnesota-grown food that rely on pollinators, like apples, melons, cucumbers, squash, strawberries, apricots, berries--and of course, honey!

According to independent scientists, systemic insecticides like neonicotinoids are a driving factor in declining bee populations. And neonicotinoids aren't just harming insect pollinators: birds, fish, and plants that are important for Minnesota hunting, fishing, and outdoor communities are also at risk, because neonics impact entire ecosytems.

Right now, decision-makers at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture are reviewing neonicotinoids and considering whether to restrict or suspend these pesticides. Beekeepers, gardeners, farmers, and many others who love Minnesota-grown food are delivering a message to MDA: be a #MNpollinatorhero and suspend neonicotinoids!

Can't be in St. Paul on December 16th? Join our efforts by posting on Facebook or Twitter using the #MNpollinatorhero hashtag.
    .@MNAgriculture thank you for reviewing neonics! Please be a #MNPollinatorHero & suspend bee-harming pesticides! #saveourbees
    Data from 800+ ind. studies finds "neonics pose serious risk of harm to honeybees, pollinators" http://bit.ly/1lzN9fc #MNPollinatorHero
    Neonic pesticides harm pollinators w/o increasing yield. Time for action, @MNAgriculture! http://1.usa.gov/1uckhy9 #MNPollinatorHero
Sponsored by Pesticide Action Network; Healthy Bees Healthy Lives; Organic Consumers Association; Pollinatorfriendly.org; Honey Bee Club of Stillwater

Parking & transit information:
Park and Ride: Free parking is available at Uni-Dale Mall at the Dale and University Green Line stop. Take the train two stops East to Robert Street and the MDA.  2.5 hour ticket for $1.75.  For train schedule visit http://www.metrotransit.org/route/902
Parking at MDA: Metered parking is available at Centennial Parking Ramp at Columbus and Central, and 14th Street Ramp, Lot U and Lot W, all on 14th Street between Robert and Jackson, with rates of 1.25/hr.

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