Sarah Mukherjee accuses the EU proposal to ban neonicotinoids from fields of being “political” (Europe poised for total ban on bee-harming pesticides, March 24). Damn right. If she means supporting the long-term interests of people over the short-term blinkered interests of a few businesses, I can hardly think of a better definition of the word.

From DDT to lead in petrol, businesses have fought tooth and nail against legal restrictions, until they came and the predicted disasters never happened. But why stop at fields and neonics? Our parks and gardens have become vital havens for all kinds of wildlife and yet our garden centres are filled with wildlife-unfriendly herbicides and pesticides, ironically shelved alongside the “bee and butterfly friendly” plants. At least farmers can argue, whether or not you agree, that their livelihoods and our food is at stake. Little is at stake if we ban all poisons from our parks and gardens, beyond a few weeds on our paths and some greenfly. Future generations will be astounded that we took so long.
Charles Harris

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Source: Guardian Climate Change