World’s most heavily used pesticide set to wipe bees off the face of the earth, leading to mass human starvation

Sunday, August 28, 2016
By Paul Martin

by: Julie Wilson
Sunday, August 28, 2016

A widely used class of pesticides implemented in the U.S. over the last 20 years continues to threaten the survival of important pollinator insects, including honeybees. Neonicotinoids, or neonics for short, closely resemble nicotine, and are biologically active at very low concentrations. They’re used in monoculture or chemical-based farming to ward off insects.

Neonics work by adversely affecting the central nervous system of insects, binding to receptors “of the enzyme nicotinic acetylcholine,” which excite the nerves and eventually cause paralysis and death.

The pesticides are applied as a seed coating or sprayed directly onto the crop. Because they are systemic pesticides, neonics are taken up by the plant and transferred to its leaves, flowers, roots and stems, as well as the pollen and nectar.

Majority of corn and canola seed in the U.S. treated with neonics

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