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To: First Lady Michelle Obama
Michelle Obama: Stand up for Bees in the White House garden and beyond!
As our nation’s first lady, and gardener-in-chief, please set an example for the nation by banning bee-killing pesticides from the White House gardens and urging the EPA and Congress to take swift action to protect bees and other pollinators.
Why is this important?
Last week, First Lady Michelle Obama finished planting her sixth-annual White House Kitchen Garden, but this year, she’s doing something different. She planted a pollinator garden to support 70,000 bees already gracing the presidential lawn as well as monarch butterflies and other pollinators.
Like many backyard gardeners, the first lady is doing her part to create habitat for bees, which are essential to one out of three bites of food we eat, and which are dying off globally in record numbers.
Because of the global bee crisis, and because we believe that Mrs. Obama understands the importance of pesticide-free organic gardening and the importance of healthy bees for the health of our food supply, the health of our families and the health of our planet, we’re asking her to join us in standing up for bees.
The situation is dire: Last year beekeepers reported record-breaking losses of 40-90 percent, with some beekeepers losing 100 percent of their hives. We expect to see similar, if not larger numbers this year. Bees are vital to our food and farming system, and they provide a critical service to our economy, accounting for $20-$30 billion annually.
The European Union placed a two year moratorium on neonics, the UK’s top retailers have stopped selling them and the city of Eugene banned them, but the EPA continues to ignore a growing body of science and has delayed action until 2018.
But the bees are telling us we can’t wait that long.
Please ask Michelle to set an example for the nation by banning bee-killing pesticides from the White House gardens and urging the EPA and Congress to take swift action to protect bees and other pollinators.