Thursday, June 05, 2008


Much speculation exists as to why bees are dying off in Colony Collapse Disorder, and we have covered a good amount of that here. Mobile phone masts and verroa mites are two suspects, but now there is a hypothesis that ethonal, or rather the byproducts of ethanol, are killing the bees. Killer ethanol. However, there may be a bias to this theory, in that there certainly are interests which desire to keep us away from any alternative energy. On the other hand, we need to look at this and give an answer either way.

Eric Pollitt of Global Hemp has been keeping me informed about the ethanol and corn use debate, his part of the world is Illinois and they know a thing or two about corn there, which is a ubiquitous crop, along with soy. The two monopolistic agrobusinesses can be quite selfishly motivated, we need to grow other crops just to keep a balance. And if we are to produce ethanol, having of course answered the question about its effects on the hymonoptera - fancy word for bees and their congeners, we need to look at whether corn is the most appropriate crop to grow for it. At present hemp is still illegal in Illinois, even though it was once prevalent there. The latest on the legal status of hemp is that in Vermont, the state legistaure voted overwhelmingly in favour of cultivation, and the governor sensibly let this pass into law. However, there is the federal government to deal with next, and we can see what happens by looking at the recent case in North Dakota where the top Republican in the state legislature is suing the feds over their right to cultivate what the Fouding Fathers grew.

Hopefully the states will win, and the feds will buzz off.

1 comment:

xerostomia said...

There appears to me a connection with bees and genetically altered crops. Organic farmers are having no issues with their bees. Commercial growers using altered strains over several years seem to be having the bee problems.