|Posted:||March 26, 2021 11:21 AM|
|From:||Representative Christina D. Sappey|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Pesticide Spraying Notifications|
|Honeybees and other pollinators play an integral role in managed and natural ecosystems, as well as our economy. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, pollinators are responsible for roughly one out of every three bites of food we take and increase our nation’s crop value by more than $15 billion each year. However, these important service providers increasingly face a variety of challenges, including habitat loss due to land development, altered land use patterns, the effects of climate change, and exposure to pests, pathogens, pesticides, and other stressors.
A study conducted by Bee Informed Partnership, a nonprofit organization, found that beekeepers located across the United States lost 43.7 percent of their managed honeybee colonies between April 2019 to April 2020. While not all honeybee losses can be attributed to pesticide use, a growing concern has emerged amongst federal and state agencies, agricultural producers, apiary owners, and educational and research institutions regarding the negative impact certain pesticide products have on pollinators.
Currently, under the provisions of Section 2105 of Title 3 (Agriculture) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, apiary owners must register with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. I plan to introduce legislation that would build on this by requiring that the Department annually distribute a copy of the registry to each licensed commercial and public pesticide application business. In addition, this measure would provide for apiary owners located within 500 feet of a pesticide application site to be notified in advance of the application.
Please join me in support of this important legislation to help protect our pollinator species.