Pollinator Protection and Proliferation

According to biologists, we sit precariously on the edge of mass species extinction and biodiversity loss, losing the plants and animals that are key to all of our survival.

A 2017 study, published in the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, calls the massive loss of wildlife a biological annihilation that represents a “frightening assault on the foundations of human civilization.” According to coverage in The Guardian, “Professor Gerardo Ceballos, at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, who led the work, said: ‘The situation has become so bad it would not be ethical not to use strong language.’”

Amphibians, grassland birds, alongside honey bees, monarch butterflies, and other pollinators, are some of the species most obviously under threat.  Of the 100 crops needed to feed 90% of the world, over 70 of these crops are pollinated by bees.

Ceres Trust provides support to organizations that are working to ensure pollinator proliferation, and to transform urban, suburban and rural land management to protect pollinators, people and the ecosystems on which we all depend.

Currently the top six agrochemical and seed companies are negotiating mergers, which could result in just three powerful multinational corporations controlling this industry. If Monsanto and Bayer, Dow and DuPont, and Syngenta and ChemChina form their respective proposed partnerships, the three resulting corporations will control nearly 70 percent of the world’s pesticide market – more than 61 percent of commercial seed sales and 80 percent of the U.S. corn-seed market. This has serious consequences for the market by limiting options for farmers and consumers, and further tilt the balance away from independent science, health and safety of people, pollinators, and our environment.

In response to this consolidation, organizations are working to block pending pesticide company mergers that would further consolidate the market for seeds and agricultural chemicals. A network of diverse groups has formed, representing farmers, farmworkers, environmental, beekeeping and consumer protection organizations, to actively oppose the pending pesticide mergers.



Stories from the Field

Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides: An introduction to the basics of biological control for nursery and greenhouse growers, as well as community members concerned about pesticide use. Robin Rosetta, Associate Professor and Extension Horticulturist at Oregon State University, explains the essentials of biological control.
Keep The Hives Alive: The Pollinator Stewardship Council presents a short primer on what you need to know about the vanishing bees.
Vanishing of the Bees, a compelling documentary that describes the crisis of disappearing and dying honey bees.
How Neonics Affect Birds, a video from the American Bird Conservancy