30 Apr 2013

Ban on pesticide chemicals in place

2:38 pm on 30 April 2013

The Environmental Protection Agency says three chemicals to be banned by the European Union due to the danger they present to bee populations are already under restrictions in New Zealand.

The European Commission is to impose a ban on a class of pesticides known as neonicotinoids.

The three neonicotinoids are clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiametoxam.

The EPA says the chemicals are restricted in New Zealand in areas where bees are foraging and are banned for use on plants or trees while in flower.

It says the restrictions are as tight, and in some cases stricter, than the EU's planned bans.

However, the Green Party says there is no monitoring of the use of neonicotinoids in New Zealand.

Primary production spokesperson Steffan Browning said a lot is unknown about many pesticides used in New Zealand and that needs to change to ensure that bee populations are not at risk.