Minnesota lawmakers block legislation to regulate neonicotinoid insecticides

bees corn syrup colony collapse

Minnesota lawmakers have derailed legislation to give the state Department of Agriculture authority over seeds treated with insecticide.

Seeds treated with neonicotinoid insecticides are widely used on corn and soybean crops. Research has shown the insecticide can harm bees when insecticide dust is released during planting.

The federal Environmental Protection Agency does not consider the treated seeds subject to pesticide regulation. But as part of a pollinator plan announced last fall, Minnesota agriculture officials sought authority to regulate seed treated with insecticide.

The systemic insecticide is effective against pests that eat seeds before they sprout, and because the insecticide is taken up by plants along with nutrients and water, it is also effective against pests that might attack the plant.

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In a recent hearing Rep. Paul Anderson, who chairs the House Agriculture Policy committee, expressed concern about giving the Department of Agriculture regulatory authority over neonicotinoid treated seeds.

“And I think that’s what concerns people in agriculture, that the department would regulate, and I assume that to mean cut down on the use of, this chemical that at least as far as raising corn is very necessary,” said Anderson, R-Starbuck.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Lawmakers reject attempt to regulate seeds that can harm pollinators

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