All the Buzz About Bicycling for Bees
“A bee is an exquisite chemist” ~Royal Beekeeper to Charles II of England
What would a world without bees look like? Very different. Almost one-third of the world’s crops are dependent on honeybees for pollination. The majority of fruits and vegetables would go away, including apples, cherries, blueberries, avocado, broccoli, most leafy greens, cucumbers, pumpkins, and more. Almonds would disappear, leading to the collapse of other food products that use almonds. Coffee would still be around, but it would become expensive and rare (even more expensive at Starbucks). There are other indirect consequences as well, particularly on cows, milk, dairy products, and various meat products.
Bees are suffering from colony losses. For example, U.S. beekeepers lost 33% of their honeybee colonies during the April 2016 to April 2017 period. Total annual losses were the lowest since 2011-12, but the 33% figure is still too high. In the six years leading up to 2013, more than 10 million beehives were lost around the world due to a disease called “colony collapse disorder”. Many factors contribute to colony losses, including parasites, diseases, poor nutrition, and pesticides.
The good news is that many organizations are doing something to help bees. One such organization is Bees Abroad, which aims to provide education and technical advice in beekeeping and suitable business skills. They are a non-profit organization helping beekeepers and families in developing countries. Bees Abroad runs training courses for local beekeepers and finances trainers.
As part of this year’s SPF EMEA sustainability initiatives, a group of brave Enablonians will cycle from London to Paris in 3 days, almost 330 km, to raise awareness to the fantastic work done by Bees Abroad and raise funds. The goal is to raise £8,888.88 (about US$12,000 or €10,100) by June 30.
To give you an idea of the immense impact that the funds will produce, £8000 will enable Bees Abroad to help 60 families in Africa increase their income by about 20%. Also, pollination of their crops will add around another 20%. Each family has around 10 members, so about 600 people will directly benefit from the funds raised by our cycling team. One person from each family is the lead beekeeper. The additional income is most often spent on school fees and medicines. Bees Abroad will also teach groups how to make hives and keep bees, thereby contributing to help local bee colonies thrive.
We couldn’t think of a better charity: one that helps ensure the continued survival of the honeybee, while at the same time helping to reduce poverty in the developing world. Two great causes being addressed simultaneously!
If you would like to make a difference for the bees and communities in need, support the efforts of our brave cyclists as they ride from London to Paris, and help Bees Abroad, please consider donating today! Any amount is good enough.
With more than 300 EHS, Sustainability, Risk and IT professionals from the world’s largest corporations, over thirty sessions and countless networking opportunities, the Sustainable Performance Forum (SPF) EMEA 2018 is the can’t-miss event of the year for future and existing Enablon Users across Europe, Middle-East and Africa. Register today: