Press Releases

Hastings and Denham Introduce Legislation to Protect Pollinators

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Washington, D.C., May 30, 2014 | comments

Today, Representatives Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) and Jeff Denham (R-CA), Co-Chairs of the Congressional Pollinator Protection Caucus, introduced the Highways Bettering the Economy and Environment Act, known as the Highways BEE Act (Legislation Attached):

“I am pleased to introduce the Highways Bettering the Economy and Environment Act with my Co-Chairman of the Congressional Pollinator Protection Caucus, Representative Denham.  This bi-partisan bill provides much-needed aid for the birds, bats, bees, and butterflies that pollinate our food,” said Hastings.

“Our farmers and the American public are dependent upon insect pollination to ensure healthy, abundant crops, and there are many ways to encourage pollinator health. One example is allowing our highway and freeway medians to bloom and flower naturally. Under this bill, all states will be able to make the choices that are in the best interest of pollinators when managing their lands,” said Denham.

“This bill provides for existing authorities and funding sources to incorporate integrated vegetation management practices along America’s highways. This kind of roadside vegetation management provides much-needed habitat for pollinators and other small nesting animals,” continued Hastings. “Seventy-five percent of all flowering plant species rely on creatures like birds, bats, bees and butterflies for fertilization. One out of every three bites of food that we eat, as well as $20 billion of products in the United States alone, derive from pollinators.”

Congressman Alcee L. Hastings serves as Senior Member of the House Rules Committee, Ranking Democratic Member of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, and Co-Chairman of the Florida Delegation.

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