As a landscape professional who works to bring pollinators back into the American yard, I applaud the ongoing coverage of the vanishing prairie and declining bee populations. However, I read “Bee die-off is linked to many causes” (May 3) with great frustration.
With the Environmental Protection Agency failing to call out neonicotinoids (or any one thing) as the primary culprit for the die-off, the article concluded that we should simply plant more pollinator-attracting flowers as a solution.
While I could selfishly agree, as ostensibly this would provide me and other landscape professionals in Minnesota with more work, it skirts the real issue. We are effectively placing the sole burden of responsibility on everyday citizens and cash-strapped municipalities to plant flowers in hopes of saving quickly declining bee populations; meanwhile, 90 million acres of American corn embedded with neonicotinoids are planted every year.
Please, by all means, plant Russian sage and other long-blooming plants that bees love. However, we cannot simply let pesticide manufacturers off the hook. These are huge problems that no individual, however well-meaning, can solve on his or her own.
John Kamp, St. Louis Park
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.