Earlier this year iconic actor, director and humanitarian Angelina Jolie got herself covered with bees with her photo on Natgeo Instgram gathering more than 3 million likes. The portrait done for National Geographic was released on World Bee Day.
The inspiration for this bold action comes from Jolie’s belief that bees are “indispensable pillar of our food supply—one that’s under threat from parasites, pesticides, habitat loss, and climate change—and of a global network of women who will be trained to protect these essential pollinators”. 1
Awareness on bees and pollinators
What is great about this initiative by Angelina Jolie is the global awareness it brings to the issue. Three out of four crops across the globe producing fruits, or seeds for use as human food depend, at least in part, on bees and other pollinators. Saving bees and pollinators is not only important from an ecological perspective. It also is fundamental for the survival of our own species.
“With so much we are worried about around the world and so many people feeling overwhelmed with bad news,” Jolie said, “this is one [problem] that we can manage.”
On a European dimension, there is a European Citizens’ Initiative for bee-friendly agriculture for a healthy environment. This is locally supported by Friends of the Earth Malta. 1 million signatures need to be collected from across all of the European Union. These also is a minimum threshold to be be reached by at least 7 member states.
The “Save Bees and Farmers!” European Citizens’ Initiative aims to:
1. A phase-out of the use of synthetic pesticides
By 2030 the use of synthetic pesticides shall be gradually reduced by 80 percent in EU agriculture. By 2035, agriculture in the entire Union shall be working without synthetic pesticides.
2. Measures to recover biodiversity
Habitats shall be restored and agricultural areas shall become a vector of biodiversity recovery.
3. Support for farmers
Farmers must be supported in the necessary transition towards agroecology. Small, diverse and sustainable farms shall be favoured, organic farming expanded, and research into pesticide-free and GMO-free agriculture will be supported.
Support the Save Bees and Farmers! European Citizens’ Initiative. Sign Now!