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Norway’s Parliament approves expanded divestment from fossil fuel investments

By on December 31, 2020

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Wall Street Journal ($):Norway’s sovereign-wealth fund is embracing renewable energy and winding down fossil-fuel investments.The Scandinavian nation’s parliament voted on Wednesday to instruct its $1 trillion fund to pull an estimated more than $13 billion from oil, gas and coal extracting companies and move up to $20 billion into renewable-energy projects and companies, representing around 2% of the fund.The Government Pension Fund Global—which has around 6% of its holdings in fossil-fuel equities—won’t pull investments from major oil companies, but will divest from smaller energy exploration and production firms, according to a proposal from the Ministry of Finance. The move could affect several of its U.S. investments including its 1.08% stake in Anadarko Petroleum Corp. , 0.98% in Occidental Petroleum Corp. and 0.96% in EOG Resources Inc.Norway’s sovereign-wealth fund is one of the largest in the world, investing in nearly 9,200 companies globally as of the end of 2018, according to government data. It has a stake in some 341 oil-and-gas companies, the largest share in the U.S., at 31% of those holdings.Norway forged its social wealth fund in 1990 with profits from the North Sea oil fields. The country’s divestment comes as government pension funds face mounting political pressure to exit fossil fuels and realign their strategies around green businesses and clean energy to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change. While political forces helped drive the divestment, the decision also reduces financial risk because the oil-and-gas industry is no longer as profitable since the oil-price drop in 2014—while renewables are in a growth phase, said Tom Sanzillo, director of finance at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, a research firm.More ($): Norway’s sovereign-wealth fund boosts renewable energy, divests fossil fuels Norway’s Parliament approves expanded divestment from fossil fuel investmentslast_img read more

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Enel to speed up closure of its last two coal plants in Chile

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first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享ReNews.biz:Enel will exit Chile’s coal power sector early by bringing forward the closure of its Bocamina coal-fired power plant, located in Coronel. The company’s Chilean subsidiaries Enel Chile and Enel Generacion Chile informed the market that their boards of directors took the decisions to accelerate the closure of the power station.Enel Generacion Chile will request Chile’s National Energy Commission (CNE) to authorise the cessation of operations of the plant’s 128MW Bocamina 1 unit by 31 December 2020 the 350MW Bocamina 2 unit by 31 May 2022.The original closure date for Bocamina 1 was by the end of 2023 and the closure of Bocamina 2 was set for 2040 at the latest.Enel global power generation head Antonio Cammisecra said: “We will be the first power company in Chile to fully exit the coal sector, while continuing to safely build renewable capacity, with concrete benefits from an environmental, economic and social standpoint.The net book value of the two Bocamina Units amounts to approximately €790m, including the related dismantling costs. The decisions of Enel Chile and Enel Generacion Chile’s Boards of Directors could entail the recognition of an impairment on the assets involved in an amount of up to the net book value.More: Enel ‘accelerates’ last Chile coal plant shutdown Enel to speed up closure of its last two coal plants in Chilelast_img read more

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Egypt teams up with Vestas for 250MW wind farm in the Gulf of Suez

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first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享ReNews.biz:The government of Egypt has signed an agreement with Vestas and other European partners to develop a 250MW wind project located in the Gulf of Suez.The project’s investment cost will total €228m, to be financed through an umbrella agreement between the Arab Republic of Egypt, the French Development Agency, the EU, the European Investment Bank and the German Construction Bank.Mohamed Shaker, minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy, witnessed the signing of the contract for the project, between the New and Renewable Energy Development and Use Authority and the Vestas Alliance, in the presence of Svend Olling, Ambassador of Denmark to Egypt, plus representatives from the European partners and investors.The wind farm will be built on land allocated to the New and Renewable Energy Development and Use Authority on the western coast of the Gulf of Suez in the Red Sea Governorate, which benefits from high wind speeds.The wind farm will be built within 35 months and will create around 4000 temporary job opportunities during the construction phase and around a hundred permanent job opportunities throughout the lifetime of the wind farm.More: Government of Egypt, Vestas sign 250MW wind deal Egypt teams up with Vestas for 250MW wind farm in the Gulf of Suezlast_img read more

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Gulf of Mexico after BP

By on December 30, 2020

first_imgEarthTalk®E – The Environmental MagazineDear EarthTalk: I’ve seen a lot of warm and fuzzy TV ads, some sponsored by BP Oil, urging me to vacation in the Gulf of Mexico. But are things really “back to normal?”    — Paul Shea, Dublin, OHThe Gulf of Mexico may be open for business and eager to attract tourists, but it’s still unclear whether or not marine and coastal ecosystems there are healthy two years after BP’s offshore drilling rig exploded 40 miles off the Louisiana coast, eventually releasing 205.8 million gallons of oil into the water column.Five months after the April 2010 disaster the Obama administration released a detailed recovery plan, calling for spending up to $21 billion—most which would come from BP’s civil penalties—on clean-up and long-term ecosystem restoration. With much of this work—designed to complement the restorative powers of Mother Nature—well underway, some observers are pleased with the results so far.“The natural recovery is far greater than what anybody hoped when it happened,” says James Morris, a University of South Carolina biologist and a member of the National Research Council committee tasked by Congress to assess the effects of the spill on the Gulf’s ecosystem. “The fears of most people—that there would be a catastrophic collapse of the ecosystem in the Gulf—never materialized.”“The fisheries have come back like gangbusters,” Morris reports. “One of the interesting findings was that after the oil spill, bait fish populations collapsed, and predator populations boomed. The reason was that there was no fishing pressure on the top predators because people stopped fishing after the spill. So the predator fish populations rebounded, and they grazed down their prey.”Not everyone shares such a rosy view. The international environmental group Greenpeace reports: “Throughout the food chain, warning signs are accumulating. Dolphins are sick and dying. Important forage fish are plagued with gill and developmental damage. Deepwater species like snapper have been stricken with lesions and their reefs are losing biodiversity. Coastal communities are struggling with changes to the fisheries they rely upon. Hard-hit oyster reefs aren’t coming back and sport fish like speckled trout have disappeared from some of their traditional haunts.”Still other observers argue that two years is not enough time to tell whether the region’s ecosystems will be severely damaged long term. “We really don’t know the effects the Deepwater Horizon spill had in the deep sea because we know little about the ecosystem processes there,” reports Gary Cherr, director of UC Davis’ Bodega Marine Laboratory and a lead author on a recently released paper published in the journal Bioscience. Cherr and his fellow researchers, including leading oceanographers, ecotoxicologists, and ecologists, conclude that scientists need more time to study how to contain damage from such accidents, especially given the trend to seek new sources of oil in off-shore regions around the U.S. and beyond.“The deep sea is not a dead zone. It’s not a desert. There’s a lot of life down there,” adds Cherr. “Unfortunately it’s not until a disaster happens that we try to piece together the impacts. That’s difficult to do when you don’t have a complete—or even partial—understanding of the ecosystem.”CONTACTS: James Morris, ww2.biol.sc.edu/~morris; Greenpeace, www.greenpeace.org; Bioscience paper, www.aibs.org/bioscience-press-releases/resources/Peterson.pdf.EarthTalk® is written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss and is a registered trademark of E – The Environmental Magazine ( www.emagazine.com). Send questions to: [email protected] Subscribe: www.emagazine.com/subscribe. Free Trial Issue: www.emagazine.com/trial.last_img read more

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Beer Blog: You Call That Tailgating?

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first_imgI had a week full of tailgating recently, hitting a University of Georgia football game in Athens, Ga. then a Mumford and Sons show outside of Greenville, S.C. I’ve always enjoyed tailgating more than the main event we’re supposedly prepping for (open containers in a piping hot parking lot—what’s not to love?). I used to think tailgating was an art form—an outlet for self expression. Now I see it more as a pissing contest. And that’s okay, I like pissing contests.Here’s what I mean: We had an RV for the UGA tailgate, complete with two big screen TVs (one inside and one outside), a cooler so large and so full of Sweetwater 420 and Terrapin Hopsicutioner that it took three men to lift it, and a commercial-sized grill firing the hundreds of brats and burgers. For entertainment, we had cornhole and a drunken longboard slalom contest. For the game, we had 65 mini bottles of liquor to stuff in various crevices throughout our bodies. Needless to say, we won that pissing contest hands down.My Mumford and Sons tailgating experience wasn’t as successful from a one-up-man-ship standpoint. The first thing you do when you pull into a parking lot for a show in the South, is start checking out everyone else’s tailgate situation. People pulled full dining sets out of the trunks of vintage Mercedes. One group was eating sushi. Another was playing a weird drinking game using their iPhones. You could sense the competition in the air. If your neighbor has beer, you’re drinking a signature cocktail. If the carload to the left of you is sporting a keg, you should have a pop-up cocktail bar complete with a mustachioed bartender.I didn’t even compete. There was no RV this time, just my minivan, the trunk open, a small fold out table with fried chicken and olives and a cooler of beer. We had chairs, which is better than the sorry group in space 13B who just stood the whole time (like animals), but otherwise, I was embarrassed by my lack of showmanship.Did I have a great time? Yes, but that’s not the point. The point is, I could’ve done better. I should’ve done better. A margarita machine, perhaps. A small grill for turkey and brie Paninis. I didn’t even have a tablecloth for Christ’s sake. My table just sat there…naked.Embarrassing.I blame all those years I lived out West. The mountains might be bigger out there, but their tailgating pales in comparison to what the South has to offer. They just don’t bring it like we bring it. Then I moved back and had kids, and who has the time to practice tailgating when you have kids…so now I’m rusty. My gear is outdated and I have no imagination when it comes to the menu and activities.Tailgating is an important skill to master, particularly if you’re adventurous. After all, what we’re really talking about here is an abbreviated car camping situation. How can you make an uncomfortable situation (hanging out in a parking lot, sleeping in the woods) feel more like home. Inflatable furniture? A misting tent? Perhaps. A pony keg of local beer? Definitely.I’m racing this weekend and hope to tailgate before and after the race (nothing says I’m ready to ride 70 miles like eating a cheese and hummus plate out of the back of your van at 6am), so please, dear readers, send me your advice, tips and tricks to help me elevate my tailgate game. I know I’m not going to win the race. But there’s a chance I could win the tailgate.last_img read more

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Editor’s Note: Getting There – From the City Limits of Asheville to the Mountains

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first_imgEverybody knows that Asheville is an outdoor oasis. Like other mountain towns in the Blue Ridge, it’s been heralded by many magazines—including this one—as a top adventure destination. Beer City and Bike City, U.S.A., Asheville is also home to top trail runners, gonzo climbers, and the best paddling in the country.But there’s more to Asheville—and every other mountain town in the South—than just its outdoor offerings. In the shadows of the beer pubs and bike shops are housing projects like Hillcrest with spectacular vistas of the mountains but no way to get there. The Hillcrest community is crammed between two interstates and a crowded overpass. The housing units line a bluff overlooking the French Broad River with views of Mount Pisgah in the distance, but most Hillcrest residents have never ventured beyond city limits.Three years ago, Nicole Hinebaugh set out to change that. An avid hiker and outdoor adventurer, Nicole loved exploring the wild woods. But after a few years of hiking the Blue Ridge, she noticed that all of her fellow outdoor adventurers were white and moderately wealthy.So she began organizing a series of summer hikes for Hillcrest kids. They became so popular that she eventually needed a bus to transport them all to the trailheads, where they hiked in the woods for the first time. Some of the kids feared that pythons and boa constrictors hid along every curve of the trail, because their only experience with nature had been through watching movies like Anaconda. Nicole eased their concerns. She taught kids the names of trees and plants. She splashed with them beneath frigid waterfalls and guided them through increasingly challenging terrain. By the end of the summer, the Hillcrest hikers had become confident outdoor explorers.“At first it was scary, but then we just got used to being in the woods,” says William, a twelve-year-old Hillcrest hiker. “Now I’m not afraid no more.”Today the Hillcrest hikers are one of the largest youth hiking groups in Asheville. Nicole and her volunteer crew lead hikes every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the summer to iconic destinations like Black Balsam, Graveyard Fields, and Douglas Falls. They operate on a shoestring budget and rely mostly on donations. They’re always seeking volunteers, youth hiking shoes and backpacks, snacks, and other support.The biggest cost—and the highest hurdle—is transportation. The Hillcrest hikers program is overflowing with interested kids eager to venture beyond the concrete jungle, but most lack a way to get to the trailhead. City buses don’t run to the forest, even when the forest is only a few miles away.I often take for granted my drive to the trailhead. If I want to go for a ride or a run, I just hop in the car and go. But for most folks living at Hillcrest and other Asheville housing projects perched on adventure’s doorstep, they can only stare longingly at the mountains.The outdoors is still (mostly) free. The trails are open to everyone, and they don’t require fancy gear to enjoy them. Our public lands are one of the country’s most egalitarian achievements. But access to them remains tilted lopsidedly toward those who can afford it.Fortunately, there are dedicated outdoor enthusiasts like Nicole—and dozens of young kids thirsting for new adventure. All they need is a ride.–Join or support the Hillcrest hikers this summer and encourage your town to extend bus routes to parks and trailheads.last_img read more

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Dickies Work Wear Still a Number-One Outdoor Apparel Choice

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first_imgIt doesn’t have to say Patagonia on it to be great outdoor wear.Of all the apparel I’ve tested and used over the last dozen or so years, I keep coming back to one of my all-time favorite brands for working and playing in the outdoors. You’ll even see me trail running and climbing in their gear. That’s right, Dickies is awesome for all things outdoors, and is one of the best trail-to-bar brands out there. And this year, they are introducing even more performance fabrics and fashion-forward styles.The new 11” Lightweight Duck Carpenter Shorts have added comfort to help you focus on the job at hand, whether that be changing the battery in your motorcycle or belaying your wife on a lead climb. They sit just below the waist and feature Dickies lightweight cotton duck fabric, outfitted with utility pocket and hammer loop. (MSRP $23.99)Dickies Ultimate Work Shirt (SS300)The new Dickies Ultimate Work Shirt is part of the Dickies Performance System. This stylin’ piece of iconic gear features wicking technology, UPF 50 sun protection and a mesh-lined vent in the back for breathability, perfect for muggy Blue Ridge days outdoors. (MSRP $36-38.99)The brand’s new Softshell Light Jacket offers DWR protection and interior storm flaps — as well as a three-piece adjustable hood, lots of pockets and cinch cords. (MSRP $66-79.99)Regular Fit Straight Leg Cargo Pant (WP595)For backpacking and bushwhacking, the new Regular Fit Straight Leg Cargo Pant is as bomber and respected as Dickies work pants have always been. They sit below the waist with a straight leg and traditional fit through the seat and thighs, crafted from a flexible poly/cotton twill work cloth. They resist wrinkles, feature easy-care stain release and wick moisture. With the multi-use pocket and cargo pocket, what else could you ask for? (MSRP $29.99)Also of note, the Dickies 1922 line includes limited edition, authentic replica pieces and heritage-inspired work wear, all manufactured in one of the oldest factories the country. Check out their classic Truck Driver jacket here.Visit your local retailer or Dickies.com.last_img read more

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Trail Mix – September 2015

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first_img Copy and paste this code to your site to embed. By Your Side Tedo Stone Dear Heloise Tommy Keene Slow Rider Bridget Kearney & Benjamin Lazar Davis 3:53 Tetherball Triumph Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey Radio Steep Canyon Rangers 4:35 Hana Glenn Mercer 3:08 5:01 3:28 Who Says Dreams Don’t Come True The Karpinka Brothers 4:29 Sad Heart of Mine Caspian 5:28 3:49 4:47 Seven Wonders Holly Golightly Wide Awake Kinsey Slippin’ Slidin’ Slim Twig Booker John Ellis & Double-Wide 2:47 Young Man Two-Thirds Goat 3:56 Pictures on Pictures GUIDES The Turnpike Troubadours highlight another tasty collection of tunes on this month’s Trail Mix.The only thing in Oklahoma hotter than The Turnpike Troubadours is the interstate asphalt that takes this quintet down to Texas, where they have established themselves as one of the hottest musical acts to catch in the Lone Star State.And the buzz is growing. After a run of dates to celebrate the release of their eponymous debut record this month, the band heads east in October, with shows in Alabama, Georgia, Virginia, and North Carolina on tap.To hear what the buzz is about, take listen to “The Mercury” on this month’s mix.Trail Mix is also excited to feature a track from Anton Fig, the long time drummer for David Letterman’s house band. On the groovy “Inside Out,” Fig is joined by longtime R&B icon Aaron Neville.This month’s mix also provided me a moment of time travel, so to speak, as Poi Dog Pondering, a band whose handbills I used to find stapled to telephone poles across campus during my undergrad years in the early 1990s, has returned with a brand new record. Perhaps “returned” is the wrong word, as they never really left. The band did slip off my radar for much of the last twenty years, though, and “All Saints Ascension,” from the band’s new record, has made for a most pleasant reunion.Another score for the September edition of Trail Mix was grabbing a track from the brand new release from Craig Finn, lead singer of The Hold Steady. Finn’s new record drops on September 11th and Trail Mix is happy to feature “Maggie, I’ve Been Searching For Our Son.”Also featured this month are Los Colognes, Kinsey, John Ellis & Double Wide, Holly Golightly, Pugwash, Mocean Worker, Slim Twig, The California Honeydrops, Barrence Whitfield & The Savages, and many, many more.The Trail Mix blog has some great stuff coming this month. Next week, we’ll hear from Steep Canyon Rangers about Mountain Song, the band’s yearly festival that celebrates its tenth anniversary next weekend. Also on tap are chats with Lucero, John Mark Nelson, and Ben Gilmer.The September mix comes in at over thirty tracks and two hours of music. Enjoy it. Play it loud. Spread the word about an artist or two you dig to a friend.And, as always, get out there and support these artists who are giving Trail Mix music to share with you. Catch them live. Buy a record or two. They will appreciate it.Photo by Justin Voight. 4:29 Pink Lemonade Monogold Turn On (The Radio) Jason Heath & The Greedy Souls 5:53 2:58 The Gold Standard Marrow Embed Went Looking for Warren Zevon’s Los Angeles Lucero 4:29 4:23 3:27 Kicking And Screaming Pugwash Incarceration Casserole Barrence Whitfield & The Savages Maggie I’ve Been Searching For Our Son Craig Finn 4:02 3:40 4:39 Jolie The California Honeydrops Middle Ground Superhuman Happiness 4:20 Baby, You Can’t Have Both Los Colognes Soul Swing Mocean Worker 5:58 The Mercury The Turnpike Troubadours Up of Stairs James Elkington & Nathan Salsburg 3:17 2:15 3:20 Audio PlayerBen GilmerTastes Like Hard LoveUse Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.00:000:00 / 4:44 Dead In The Water Randall Bramblett 3:20 1:59 4:27 Dream Last Night John Mark Nelson 3:43 4:44 2:33 3:49 3:14 Tastes Like Hard Love Ben Gilmer Guitar Child Tom Chapin Inside Out Anton Fig All Saints Ascension Poi Dog Pondering Brown Bird The Blackbery Bushes Stringband 4:03 last_img read more

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Quick Hits: Southeast added 242 MW of distributed Solar + Pipeline Protestors

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first_imgThe southeast added 242 MW of distributed solar in 2018Solar installation crews in the Southeast put up 242 MW of small-scale solar PV systems from October 2017 through October 2018. Florida led the charge, installing 85 mega-watts (MW) of solar, followed by 78 MW in South Carolina, 27 MW in Georgia, 22 MW in North Carolina, and 17 MW in Louisiana. At the bottom of the pack, Arkansas installed 8 MW, Alabama and Tennessee both installed 2 MW and Mississippi installed 1 MW. Solar power is a renewable energy source that causes no greenhouse gases to be emitted after installation.Pennsylvania 2019 adult trout stocking schedules announcedThe Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) has announced that the 2019 adult trout stocking schedules are now available online at www.fishandboat.com and on the “FishBoatPA” mobile app. The PFBC stocks approximately 3.2 milllion adult trout in 707 streams and 127 lakes across the state. These figures include approximately 2.1 million rainbow trout; 640,000 brown trout, 440,000 brook trout, and 9,600 trophy golden rainbow trout. The 2019 season will open Saturday, March 23 with the Mentored Youth Trout Fishing Day program in 18 southeastern counties. Saturday, March 30 kicks off the Regional Opening Day of Trout Season in the same 18 southeastern counties. A second Mentored Youth Trout Fishing Day will be held on April 6, the Saturday before the regular statewide opening of trout season on April 13. Recent cold weather hasn’t stopped Mountain Valley Pipeline protestorsMountain Valley Pipeline opponent Phillip Flagg has been sitting in a tree in protest for 150 days. Since he climbed the tree in October, Flagg has endured high winds, frigid temperatures and heavy snow, but he says that none of the challenges have caused him to second guess his protest. Flagg and other protestors say that they don’t plan to end their protest anytime soon and that the tree-sits aren’t symbolic; protestors hope to physically stop construction of the pipeline. Flagg and his fellow tree-sitters are the latest to scale trees along the route of the natural gas pipeline, which begins in West Virginia and runs through southwest Virginia before connecting with the more than 10,000-mile Transco pipeline system in Pittsylvania County, VA. Some of the tree-sitters have faced charges or fines.  A spokesperson for the Mountain Valley Pipeline says that the company respects opponents views but is concerned their actions put their health and safety at risk.last_img read more

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The Current State of N.C.’s Honey Bees

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first_imgAnd still, honey bees continue to give. Honey bees make their own kind of gold called propolis, which can be extracted from the hive to combat allergies and soothe aching joints. And, of course, raw local honey has tremendous antimicrobial properties that can boost the immune system and support the gut.  Tarpy reminds all who are able, “support local beekeeping communities, beekeepers are on the front lines of this issue”. If you want to jump in on the action, round up your fellow honey bee enthusiasts to keep our state insect thriving.  The emergence of the Varroa mite has become a formidable assassin that wreaks havoc on the microbiome of honey bees. But there is hope for a counterattack against this parasite as scientists are developing a bacterial treatment for the bees.  Various states from coast to coast have already implemented laws, many establishing habitat protection, outlawing certain pesticides, or raising awareness for beekeeping. On the federal level, there are few regulations that safeguard honey bees, but as of January 2020, the EPA is working to move legislation forward that outlaws a number of pesticides and neonicotinoids that harm bee populations.  Photo of bee collecting pollen courtesy of Getty Images “Understand what is a honey bee and what is not a honey bee and what is a wasp or beneficial bee.” says Tarpy, “provide habitat for all bees, plant pollen and nectar-bearing plants-things that bloom throughout the year, especially through the height of the summer. Honey bees love zinnias!”  Neonicotinoids directly impact the nervous system, resulting in nerve synapse damage and paralysis to unsuspecting insects and pollinators who come in contact with treated plant parts. In one respect, researchers argue that simply following bottle labels of neonicotinoid products is “safe” and will not likely result in any environmental threat, yet thirteen countries as of 2018 have banned neonicotinoids. As to the bill addressing this dangerous compound, the effort was short-lived as the bill failed to be heard in the Senate and House committees. Any further legislation must be done at the 2021 session.  Luckily, honey bees do have human cheerleaders. In 2019, Senators Mike Woodard (D), Valerie Foushee (D), Natasha Marcus (D), and Mujtaba Mohammed (D) of North Carolina’s Senate, sponsored a bill called The Pollinator Protection Act (S496). The bill demanded more restrictions on insecticides, called neonicotinoids.  Yet, honey bee populations are taking a sharp decline that’s raising concern from environmentalists, bee lovers, farmers, and economists alike. There are an estimated 2.9 million honey bee colonies across America. North Carolina is home to up to 120,000 of those colonies. Since 2018, the national honey bee population has been reduced by 40 percent and will remain under fire without addressing the culprits of these bee deaths.  Yet, the more pressing matters originate from man-made threats to the honey bees. There are major factors that are contributing to the decline, the first of which being the ever-popular use of pesticides. Farmers who spray pesticides on their crops are exposing all bees, not just honey bees, to harmful chemicals that are toxic to their bodies. Just one incident of pesticide exposure: decimation. Entire colonies are gone in as little as 24 hours, bee skeletons hitting the ground like raindrops. Near constant habitat destruction continues to decrease access to food sites and fragment honey bee colonies, forcing a search for new sources of nectar, thus leading to migration elsewhere.  Dr. David Tarpy, professor of entomology and plant pathology at NC State University and extension apiculturist, explains that although the honey bee population, or any bee species for that matter, falls in the winter, the colonies will “regenerate” in the spring as new bees are born into the hive.  If you want to get involved and help protect the honey bees, you can do so in whatever means that you are capable of. Writing your local lawmakers, growing bee-friendly plants in your garden, or simply raising awareness for honey bee importance, protection, and celebration can spark change. We could all benefit from Dr. Tarpy’s suggestion of remaining “api-curious”, which is a friendly invitation to learn how to differentiate between bee species and understand how to support the honey bee.  Honey bees are a keystone species, playing a significant role in the survival of a wide range of Earth’s flora and fauna. These bees are blessings and play a significant role in the survival of so many of Earth’s creatures. When you want to know if your local area is thriving, look for the honey bee. Our little busy neighbors do more than just pollinate your backyard gardens, they can indicate the health of an entire ecosystem.  There’s a distant buzz, then a whizz overhead. Finally, it comes into view as it lands on a blossoming flower. It’s a honey bee hard at work, collecting pollen from the plants and wildflowers that line the trail. You watch as it meticulously gathers the precious yellow dust, tucks it behind its knees, and bustles over to the next source.  These little workers can increase the nutritional density of foods as they transfer pollen from one plant species to another. This also leads to providing food for farm animals and other critters that thrive on foraging for plant life. In order to allow for new growth, plants depend on honey bee pollination to produce seeds, which sprout forth in the ovule of the plant once pollen comes in contact with the stigma. Forest regeneration is also supported through this process and is one of the most honorable services a honey bee performs for our planet.  Unfortunately, this does not take away from the looming attacks from human and environmental sources. For those who take a special interest in honey bees and preserving their existence, Tarpy suggests starting with the basics. Honey bees, like most other bees, take responsibility for pollinating our farmland and other vegetation. Pollinator dependent crops rely on bees to gather pollen from flowering infant plants in order to reproduce. Many of these plants, such as cotton, apples, and blueberries, are major cash crops in North Carolina’s economy and most commonly fall under honey bee jurisdiction since these plants are native to the bee’s habitat. last_img read more

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