A world without bees?? The human race relies on these tiny buzzing creatures to help spread the love, or at least the pollen, across fields and grounds we can’t fertilize ourselves. The USDA estimates that honeybees do almost fifteen billion dollars in work for American farmers annually. The partnership between bees and humans, however, is somewhat skewed. Lots of pesticides used are wiping out bee colonies by confusing the bee’s homing system. The chemicals are causing bees to lose track of how to get home on their own and slowly one by one the bees die off and whole colonies disappear. While pesticides are not the only contributing factor, global climate and extreme weather chaos have a strong connection with suspected causes of bee extinction. Typically, a bee needs sixty pounds of honey saved up each fall to survive the winter. With chaotic and stressful conditions, the bees don’t have the resources they need to produce honey which means they won’t last through the cold weather winter brings. The epidemic has gotten so bad that in the UK three species of bees have already gone extinct. In the US it is even worse and almost ninety percent of the wild population in the United States has died off. If we continue in our current ways and the bees die off next on the list is wildflowers, then crops and no more food means no more people. It’s calculated that Americans owe 1/3 of their bites of food to bees.
While lots of bees have already disappeared, we have lots of ways to help preserve the bee species and in turn, our chance of survival. The first step is to find alternatives to harsh chemicals we mostly use to kill off weeds and other unwanted plants. Second, we need to look at different energy sources that will have us not so heavily reliant on energy systems that are proven to cause global warming. If we fail in doing these things we need to start using our technologies to create an artificial way of pollinating the planet to preserve our crops and our population.