Pollinator Protection

Partners in Pollinator Protection

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Working with Federal Partners

We are working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, agricultural equipment manufacturers, and the pesticide and seed industry to develop and apply technologies to reduce exposure to dust from pesticide-treated seed during planting activities.

USDA is leading the federal government'’s effort to examine honey bee health. We are part of this effort, focusing on aspects related to pesticides.

Recent declines in commercial honey bee populations have refocused efforts to identify and use best management practices to minimize unintended contact between bees and pesticides. This is particularly challenging given the critical role bees play in pollinating agricultural crops as well as the important role insecticides play in controlling pests in agriculture. The EPA and USDA are leading collaborative efforts with a wide range of stakeholders to keep bees safe from pesticides.

See the Colony Collapse Disorder Action Plan (PDF)(28 pp, 2 MB, about PDF) for more information.

We are working with our federal partners and other stakeholders through a workgroup under our advisory group, the Pesticide Program Dialogue Committee. The workgroup focuses on pollinator protection related to the following themes:

  • Initial, science-based risk management approaches, including appropriate labeling restrictions and training.
  • Development of information on state approaches and authorities.
  • Transfer of lessons learned by various stakeholders to improve existing management practices.
  • Continuing international communication.
  • Other issues the Agency wishes to bring to the workgroup’s attention.

On June 20, 2014, President Obama issued a directive to federal agencies to create a federal strategy to promote honey bee and other pollinator health. The President’s directive created a Pollinator Health Task Force, co-chaired by EPA and USDA, and charged federal agencies with expanding federal efforts and taking new steps to reverse pollinator losses. Read President Obama's directive.

More on the PPDC Pollinator Protection Workgroup.

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Working with State and Other Partners

We are collaborating with state agencies and the North American Pollinator Campaign Exit to advance education and training modules in pesticide applicator certification courses. Several states have implemented best management practices, and more are underway. 

Working with International Partners 

We work with global partners to develop and implement appropriate tests for evaluating both exposure to and effects of pesticides on honey bees. The following links exit the site Exit

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