Business for Bees

American Business Collaboration for Pollinator Conservation Action 

The Issue

Pollinating species and their interactions with plants are critical to the sustainability of the agriculture and ecosystems of the United States and to the health and well-being of American citizens.  Pollinators, including a full spectrum of species from honey bees to monarch butterflies, are experiencing disturbing signs of decline from a variety of causes including lack of habitat and forage, climate change and extreme weather conditions, pathogens, parasites, pesticide misuse, and a lack of awareness and actions on their behalf.  Pollinators supply nearly one in every three bites of food, and supporting their health supports our own health and the future stability of our food and natural resources.

Business Know-How Applied to Cooperative Conservation

In response to this challenge, and inspired by a 2014 White House Pollinator Stakeholders meeting, the undersigned businesses are joining collaboratively  to form a network called Business for Bees—American Business Collaboration for Pollinator Conservation Action (ABC/PCA).  The concept is to:

  • Create a peer-to-peer network of businesses that commit to taking action to foster the recovery and sustainment of pollinators and their habitat;
  • Enlist new voices in a coordinated vision of pollinators as a vital part of the American landscape;
  • Provide feedback and connection to the White House, and other government and NGO initiatives; and
  • Engage our employees, our customers, our communities, and our industries in this effort.

Business for Bees—Action Plan The best action for supporting pollinators is to bring a “pollinator ethic” to land management at all landscape levels, challenging and collaboratively engaging stakeholders in both the private and public sectors to take action.  The three key actions needed are:

  • Landscape conservation and management for habitat;
  • Research and monitoring; and
  • Outreach and education in land management, pesticide use, and pollinator-beneficial plantings.

Business for Bees—Goals The transformative power of a coordinated effort within the business community will:

  • Utilize management approaches that will ensure a sustainable future for pollination as an ecosystem service and pollinated plants as a fundamental keystone in all terrestrial ecosystems;
  • Support science that is fully vetted, unbiased and that guides practical action; and
  • Actively engage in sustainable actions as mandated by individual company’s sustainability and corporate social responsibility objectives.

These collaborative actions will lead to more natural landscapes, less soil erosion, less pesticide exposure, reduction in CO2 levels, increased carbon sequestration, protections against invasive plant species, sustainable cropping systems, and increased habitat for pollinators, as well as for other species of animals and plants that depend on healthy landscapes. Business for Bees–Vision  and Objectives As a collaborative group, we are evolving; but we are secure in the knowledge that we are working together to multiply our effectiveness and to build a network among businesses and that we are dedicated to real rather than symbolic progress.

  • We will catalyze a business approach to problem solving that can be effective in reaching constituencies that may relate more to business than to government and are needed partners in the success of this effort.
  • We will engage in landscape-level conservation that helps all pollinating species (monarch butterflies, honey bees, native bees, bats and more).
  • We will add pollinators to our existing actions.  Knowing that this process will take time, we will engage in what we believe to be a  5 year vision and action plan.
  • We will initiate and leverage partnerships with state and local governments to influence  local actions which control much of regional landscapes.
  • We will use our technology and marketing prowess to support informed and effective action.

 Pollinator Partnership Administration The Pollinator Partnership (P2) provides administrative support for Business for Bees.  After nearly two decades, P2 is the largest organization in the world dealing exclusively with the issues of pollinators(see www.pollinator.org)  and provides administrative oversight  for the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC) which brings together scientists, NGO’s, government agencies, business and  academia in strategic efforts to advance pollinator health.