Since being elected as your Member of Parliament in 2015, many constituents have written to me calling for a ban on neonicotinoid pesticides to protect our declining bee populations across Canada. Bees perform a critical pollinating role in nature and within our agricultural industries.
I am pleased to let you know that the use of neonicotinoid pesticides, which are currently approved for use, will be phased out over the next three years. Neonicotinoids, or neonics, are a class of pesticides used by farmers and gardeners to manage pests like aphids and spider mites. Many scientists have blamed the chemicals for weakening bees, making them more susceptible to disease and bad weather. It is estimated that one-third of all Canadian bees died last winter due to the unusually cold weather.
Two of the nionics will be banned and the third will be highly restricted to indoor use only . This decision follows six years of research and follows a similar ban announced by the European Union this summer. The United States has not yet supported such a change and I applaud Health Canada for taking a leadership role in North America in this regard.
I appreciate the support I have received in supporting this decision and will continue to support concrete measures that protect our environment.