Posts Tagged ‘pollinator decline’

How Valuable Are Pollinators?

Wednesday, September 17th, 2008

Here’s a statistic that will come in handy next time you’re at a one of those cocktail parties where somebody pooh-poohs biological diversity by asking “Who needs insects anyway?” According to a paper in the journal Ecological Economics, the economic value of pollinators, especially bees, is about $217 billion a year. As reported in Science Daily, the study suggests that if it continues, the current decline of pollinators worldwide will have the biggest effect on fruits and vegetables, followed by oilseed crops. Crops that generally don’t depend on pollinators, such as cereals, sugar cane, and spices, would suffer fewer adverse affects.

A Rose by any Other Name Would not Smell as Sweet

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

And now, another reason why air pollution is bad. It not only wrecks our lungs but also destroys flower fragrance. According to a new study, the scent molecules produced by blossoms bond quickly with ozone and other pollutants, producing chemically altered aromas that no longer smell like flowers. This, according to the researchers, could at least partially explain why wild populations of pollinators, especially bees, are declining in some areas, including California.