Health Canada is proposing a ban on almost all uses of a controversial neonicotinoid pesticide called imidacloprid, saying it is seeping into Canadian waterways at levels that can harm insects and the ecosystem.
Neonicotinoid pesticides, the most widely used class of insecticides in the world, have faced increasing restrictions because of the risk they pose to bees, but have been allowed in Canada for agricultural and cosmetic purposes.
Today, Health Canada released its draft risk assessment for imidacloprid for public comment. This review doesn’t look at bees — that’s being done in a separate assessment.
“Based on currently available information, the continued high-volume use of imidacloprid in agricultural areas is not sustainable,” the assessment states.
It proposes phasing out all agricultural uses of imidacloprid, and a majority of other uses, over the next three to five years.
“I’m really surprised,” said Mark Winston, a professor of apiculture at Simon Fraser University and senior fellow at the university’s Centre for …
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