EU FAILS TO REACH DECISION ON BEE-KILLING PESTICIDES
The European Union failed to reach a decision on whether to ban three pesticides linked to the decline of honey bee populations. Sources indicated that 13 governments voted in favor of a two-year moratorium, first proposed in January, while nine countries voted against and five countries abstained. The European Food Safety Agency released a report indicating that the three widely used pesticides pose a "high acute risk" to pollinators, but a spokeswoman for the environment agency in the United Kingdom, which abstained, said that governments "do not have the evidence yet," and so it was impossible for them to "vote either way." The vote angered groups campaigning for the ban, and Avaaz accused Germany and Britain, who abstained, of "cav[ing] to the industry lobby." "Today's vote flies in the face of science and public opinion and maintains the disastrous chemical armageddon on bees," said a spokesman for Avaaz. Under EU rules, members will now have two months to reach a compromise or the European Commission will be able to unilaterally accept the proposal. For the full story, see http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/03/15/us-eu-pesticides-idUKBRE92E0GV20130315 and http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-21793365.