How’s this for a horror story concept: Evil Corporation kills all the bees and then manufactures patented artificial robotic bees to serve as pollinators – but incapable of producing their famous byproduct and benefit: honey.
Does that thought send shivers down your spine? The bad news is that this horror story is reality as we know it.
A couple of years ago, ordinary honeybees began to die off at alarmingly high rates. Mainstream science and media simply could not figure out what might drive these essential pollinators and honey makers to extinction?
Then, a January 2016 a report released by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) assessed “the risks of agricultural uses of imidacloprid to bees.”
Wikipedia tells us that “Imidacloprid is a systemic insecticide that acts as an insect neurotoxin and belongs to a class of chemicals called the neonicotinoids which act on the central nervous system of insects.”
Mother Jones identifies the culprit who manufactures Imidacloprid:
“The EPA’s long-awaited assessment focused on how one of the most prominent neonics—Bayer’s imidacloprid—affects bees.”
According to March Against Monsanto
“The EPA confirms that when bees encounter imidacloprid at levels above 25 parts per billion, a common level on farms, they suffer harm.”
Beekeeper Brett Adee lost over 6,000 bee hives from airborne neonicotinoid applied to a neighboring corn crop. Adee expressed his opinion without mincing any words:
“A defective product is being marketed. It’s blowing all over the willows and dandelions and not staying on the seeds.”
So the Evil Corporation in this real horror story is Bayer – with Monsanto coming in a close second, long besieged by lawsuits over the cancerous and other noxious effects of their crop-promoting products.
Pesticides, herbicides and other poisons have been banned in the European Union since 2013, including imidacloprid.
On January 1 of this year (2018), Maryland became the first U.S. state to ban the “sales of products containing the neonicotinoid class of pesticides”
Although several sources, including Modern Agriculture, are spreading the happy news that bee populations in the U.S. have been on the rise over the past couple of years – since the EPA report and sanctions, coincidentally – banning agricultural poisons may be 20 years too late. Let’s hope not.
The Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies gets right down to why honey bees are vital to the food supply, not only in the U.S., but globally:
“One of every three bites of food eaten worldwide depends on pollinators, especially bees, for a successful harvest.”
The story so far: Evil Corporation kills the honey bees. They struggle to make a come-back. Enter the Robot Bees!”
Nature abhors a vacuum and so does Walmart, evidently. The grocery and department retail giant has taken out a patent on “autonomous robot bees” – seriously, this is no joke.
Farm drones are the latest thing to modernize Big Agriculture, we are being told.
Exceedingly mainstream National Geographic is nothing short in their glowing praise and high expectations for replacement bees. Their video titled “Tiny, Robotic Bees Could Change the World” paints the rosiest possible picture of how programmable machines will save the planet.
But others are far less positive and far more skeptical regarding the rise of AI (artificial intelligence) and the unsavory implications of the potential weaponization of ubiquitous, every-day things – like honey bees.
In the Youtube video titled “Autonomous Robot Bees to be Deployed in Public” Professor Shashi Shekhar from the University of Minnesota “warns that fleets of robobees could be hacked or developed by militaries to carry chemical ‘stings’ as a weapon to attack humans.”
So there you have it. The horror story is right here, right now.