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NYR Bee Lovely petition goes to Downing Street

25 February, 2013

Natural Health News — Today, Monday 25th February, we had the privilege of handing in your petitions to 10 Downing Street, for the attention of Prime Minister David Cameron — urging him to listen to the public and ensure action is taken to ban bee harming pesticides.

Bee Lovely 2013 - Every purchase from the Bee Lovely range puts money in the hands of charities who are helping to save our bees

Thanks to each and every 117,345 of you for signing our Bee Lovely petition, supporting the bees, and joining the call to ban deadly neonicotinoid pesticides. To get that many signatures is really amazing and also really demonstrates how important this is to so many of you. Thank you for your support!

The timing couldn’t be better too. Today is when the EU takes a vote on whether to stop using the neonicotinoid pesticides clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiametoxam.

The EU proposals will only be passed if a majority of EU member states vote in favour. France, Holland and many other states are supportive but the UK and Germany are reported to be reluctant. Hopefully your voices will come through loud and clear to our Prime Minister and to our Secretary of State for the Environment Owen Paterson, who is attending the vote, letting them know it’s time for the UK to take action.

These three neonic pesticides have been shown by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), to be the cause of much of the damage to bee populations across Britain and Europe.

Knocking on the Prime Minister’s door

Our Bee Lovely team  from Neal’s Yard Remedies headed out from the office in Neal’s Yard to Downing Street at lunchtime.

Policeman Brian, who guards Number 10 Downing Street, showed us what we needed to do

After passing security checks, they headed for the world’s most famous glossy black front door.

They were met by a lovely policeman, Brian, who took them through the drill of handing in a petition to Downing Street.

Did you know that 10 Downing Street is probably the only front door in the world where people knock to come out? We didn’t either.

After taking a few photos of the momentous occasion, they rapped gently on the wooden door, only to have Ben, the security officer inside, open it a crack and tell them “that’s not a knock, do it again with the knocker this time”!

They knocked again, with the knocker this time, loud and proud, the sound echoing around the empty street and spacious entrance hall.

This time Ben opened the door wide, and with a smile took our wicker box heavy with Bee Lovely petitions into 10 Downing Street, to be handed to the Prime Minister.

 What did our letter say?

The petition package also included a letter to Prime Minister David Cameron from NYR owner Peter Kindersley which said:

Dear Mr Cameron,

Immediate action needed to save our pollinators!

Over 100,000 of our customers, your voters, have joined voices calling for an urgent ban on the use of Neonicotinoid pesticides in the UK.  We have collected these signatures, enclosed, as part of the Neal’s Yard Remedies Bee Lovely Campaign – and have had overwhelming support.

As you state in your 2010 manifesto, we need to act now to enhance biodiversity.  Neonicotinoids are 7,000 more toxic than DDT that was banned in Britain in 1984. Each signature on our petition expresses the importance of banning the use of deadly neonicotinoid pesticides from the UK – an urgent step needed to help to ultimately prevent the devastating decline of bees and other pollinators.

With every third mouthful of food thanks to pollination, the decline in pollinators is a real threat to our food system, our economy and our countryside. 

OK Mr Cameron and Mr Paterson, we've done our job. Now you do yours!

And whilst we applaud leading retailers taking neonicotinoids off their shelves voluntarily, we need definitive and all-encompassing action on the part of the government to absolutely protect our environment and our wildlife.

The recent European Food Safety Authority report claims neonicotinoids are an ‘unacceptable danger to bees’.  We await news from the EU ENVI discussions on this today, Monday 25th February 2013 and urge you, Prime Minister, to join leading voices across the EU calling for a ban.

Yours Sincerely,

Peter Kindersley and the Neal’s Yard Remedies Bee Lovely Team

What happens next?

Keep watching this site our twitter and facebook pages to see if our collective voices have been heard, and if these deadly pesticides have finally been banned.

And in the mean time, please keep supporting our precious bees by choosing organic, planting wild and organic flowers in your gardens, window sills, and any open space, and by supporting Bee Lovely projects and our ongoing campaign. It’s not too late to make a difference and Help Save the Bees.