On 2nd February, Luke organised a debate in Westminster Hall to challenge the government’s decision to temporarily lift the ban on bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides for sugar-beet production.
The decision went against the advice of the government’s advisory bodies, the Expert Committee on Pesticides and the Health and Safety Executive, which both concluded that the risk to crops was not significant enough to justify the use of bee-killing pesticides.
Luke challenged the government to do three things:
- To restore the ban on bee-killing pesticides — no ifs or buts.
- To do more to help sugar beet farmers, some of whom face financial losses and real difficulties because of aphids.
- To hold an annual Parliamentary vote on whether to use bee-killing pesticides, rather than allowing Ministers to sneak out a lifting of the ban.
“Bee health is non-negotiable. We are in the middle of a climate and ecological crisis. That means that we must not only act faster to cut carbon and do so fairly, creating green jobs; we must also protect nature, and look after our pollinators.”