This little guy is so crucial to all of our existence and what are we doing to look after him?
This week I had to order some more certified organic beeswax so I can make beautiful organic treatment balms for you. The price had almost doubled since last year. My supplier said there was no sign of the price stopping its rapid rise. I can't stop thinking about it.
Every time someone uses chemical insecticides or rips out a forest, or hedgerows, or wild grasslands to turn the land over to food production, the intricate web of life of an ecosystem is threatened. As bees continue their rapid decline in population, so does the rate of pollination of plants. So not only do we lose bees and their precious wax and honey, but we lose plants, trees, vegetables, your favorite flowers. We lose medicine, we lose the healers. We lose our cultural heritage, we lose our history, we lose our art, the clothes on our back.
Did you see a report that came out a week or so ago saying the population of flying insects in Europe has declined by over 75% just in the last three decades? This does not happen by itself. And just because that report is in Europe it doesn't mean that New Zealand can pat itself on the back. Our environmental record is pretty shabby right now.
Yes, people can turn a blind eye and say 'but what about agricultural productivity?' but this is just not good enough anymore. Agriculture should be working with nature, not against it.
As consumers, we can demand that the products we buy are produced in a way that supports our environment. We really have to question the nature of value and the value of Nature. It is not right that synthetic, petrochemical rubbish that is harmful to human and environmental health is churned out in factories all over the world and on a shop shelf looks like 'good value'; or chemical-heavy monocultures of food production takes environmental precedence while ecological impacts and climate change create scarcity and price hikes in the things that are good for you and for the environment.
As citizens, we can and should demand that our governments do more to place the value of nature at the very centre of decision-making. And it is not good enough for them to say 'we don't know what to do' as many, many people have been doing amazing things to help restore some balance to the way we live on this planet and working on ways governments and business can shift to being more environmentally-centric while still creating a healthy economy.
We try and tuck a bit of money away for the generations that follow us - but to honest I think ensuring that they have a healthy planet is far more important.
The rocketing price of beeswax does not surprise me, but oh my god it saddens me.
Come on people. We need to truly become stewards of our planet.
A couple of links:
If you work for a government or local council or a business check out www.teebweb.org - there are many policy tools and methodologies you can use to improve the state of play
Study shows over 75% decline in flying insects http://edition.cnn.com/2017/10/19/europe/insect-decline-germany/index.html