The Excelsior City Council approved a resolution Sept. 19 to adopt bee-friendly practices.
Excelsior joins a number of cities, including Champlin, Stillwater and Shorewood, in the effort to protect honeybees. Beekeepers across the United States have reported losing more than 40 percent of their honeybee colonies in the past year.
It’s estimated that cross-pollination from bees helps 30 percent of the world’s food crops and 90 percent of wild plants. In the United States, bees pollinate more than $15 billion worth of crops.
The Excelsior resolution was brought before the city council after a local resident expressed interest in having the city adopt a bee-safe policy similar to Shorewood’s policy.
In 2014, Shorewood became the first Minnesota city and the third city in the nation to pass a bee-friendly policy that encouraged the city and local residents to plant bee-safe flowers and restrict pesticides, especially neonicotinoids, which are fatal to bees.
“We took a look at the request and most of the items on it our public works is already doing so we felt it was reasonable to make some slight modifications to the Shorewood resolution and adopt our own resolution,” said Excelsior City Manager Kristi Luger.
The Excelsior resolution states that the city shall become a bee-safe community by undertaking better management practices that include planting flowers that are favorable to bees and other pollinators, refraining from using pesticides in public places, especially neonicotinoids, and informing and educating the community on the importance of creating and maintaining a pollinator-friendly habitat.
“I think it is a great idea,” said Councilmember John Beattie. “It’s certainly a good policy for us to support.”
Contact Paige Kieffer at [email protected]