Trenton – A bill sponsored by the Senate Environment and Energy Committee Chair Senator Bob Smith, which would direct the Department of Environmental Protection to classify neonicotinoid pesticides as restricted use pesticides, cleared the Senate Environment and Energy Committee today.
“The use of neonicotinoid pesticides must be restricted to protect New Jersey’s citizens and environment. Most importantly, these pesticides have been linked to the destruction of honeybee colonies across the country. Honeybees are one of the most important organisms in our ecosystem and are key to the survival of our agricultural industry,” said Senator Smith (D-Middlesex/Somerset). “These insecticides should only be used by those who know the ramifications of excessive use and those who will use them appropriately to protect New Jersey’s agriculture and economy.”
The bill, S-1016, would direct the Department of Environmental Protection to classify neonicotinoid pesticides as restricted use pesticides. This classification would mean that neonicotinoids could only be purchased and used by certified and licensed pesticide applicators or by those under the direct supervision of these applicators.
Neonicotinoids are a class of neuro-active insecticides chemically similar to nicotine. The neonicotinoid family includes acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, nithiazine, thiacloprid, and thiamethoxam. They are common in Admire, Gaucho, Advocate and many more.
Neonicotinoids have been linked to adverse ecological effects such as honeybee colony collapse disorder. This bill follows similar bills that have been passed in other states as well as the European Union to curb the negative ecological effects of neonicotinoid pesticides.
The bill was released from committee by a vote of 3-0.