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Articles on Pesticides

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Bees that can adapt to the changing climate around us offer hope for more research and better policy and conservation efforts. (Shutterstock)

What a buzzkill: Early-ending winters disrupt bumblebee slumber

Seventy-two per cent of native bumblebee species in North America are cutting their winter hibernation short by timing their emergence to earlier spring onsets.
BPA is an industrial chemical used to make hard, clear plastic known as polycarbonate. It’s also used in the lining of some cans. Many hard plastic bottles no longer contain BPA, and it’s illegal to sell baby bottles with BPA in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Science shows that BPA and other endocrine disruptors are harmful to human health, which should incite tighter regulations

There is abundant evidence of the involvement of endocrine disruptors in reproductive dysfunction in several species, including humans.
Mosquito eggs float on the surface of a pond. The insecticide Bti is used to kill mosquito larvae, but it could also harm frogs. (Shutterstock)

Are mosquito-killing natural pesticides unintentionally harming frogs?

The insecticide Bti kills target organisms like mosquitoes and blackflies, but new research shows it may also have negative effects on non-target species like frogs.
Soybean plants on an Arkansas farm. Those at left show signs of damage from dicamba; others at right were planted later in the season. Washington Post via Getty Images

The herbicide dicamba was supposed to solve farmers’ weed problems – instead, it’s making farming harder for many of them

Farmers are stuck in a chemical war against weeds, which have developed resistance to many widely used herbicides. Seed companies’ answer – using more varied herbicides – is causing new problems.
Chlorpyrifos is widely used on crops, including fruits, vegetables, nuts, corn and soybeans. AP Photo/John Raoux

The EPA is banning chlorpyrifos, a pesticide widely used on food crops, after 14 years of pressure from environmental and labor groups

What kind of evidence does it require to get a widely used chemical banned? A professor of medicine and former state regulator explains how the case for chlorpyrifos as a threat to public health developed.
Organic vegetables at the Center for Urban Agriculture at Fairview Gardens, Goleta, Calif. Citizen of the Planet/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Organic food has become mainstream but still has room to grow

Four out of five Americans regularly buy some kind of organic food. An expert on the industry says more federal support could greatly expand organic farming and its environmental benefits.

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