Lowe's plans to stop selling pesticides linked to the massive decline of honeybees around the world. The home improvement chain announced on Thursday that it would phase out products containing neonic pesticides over the next four years. In recent years, billions of bees have died from a condition known as colony collapse disorder (CCD) and neonicotinoids have been linked in multiple studies to the deaths of birds, bees and other animals. Lowe's announcement comes after the EPA said last week that it would stop issuing new permits to use the pesticides. On Wednesday, a report from an influential European scientific council warned that neonicotinoids were more harmful to the environment than previously thought.
Lowe's also said that it would work with growers to "eliminate the use of neonic pesticides on bee-attractive plants we sell." Home Depot announced last summer that it would label plants treated with neonicotinoids. Both companies have been the target of protests by environmental activists. The environmental group Friends of the Earth said it was "pleased Lowe's is listening to consumer concerns" and the "growing body of science telling us we need to move away from bee-toxic pesticides."
— Keith Wagstaff