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PNS Daily Newscast - May 25, 2018 


President Trump scraps planned talks with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. Also on our Friday rundown: California lawmakers support and emergency hotline for foster kids; and boating is a booming business in states like Minnesota.

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Appalachian Beekeepers "Sweeten Up" Reclaimed Surface Mines

August 5, 2010

CHARLESTON, W.V. - Beekeepers and scientists are puzzled about the decline in the honeybee population, but one project has Appalachian coal companies placing flowering, pollen-producing plants on surface mine sites where they used to dig for black gold. It's bringing together unlikely allies - environmentalists and coal companies - to help the bee industry.

Tammy Horn, bee researcher at Eastern Kentucky University, has convinced four coal companies in three counties to establish a "honey corridor." She explains deforestation from residential and road development, and the coal industry, have large-scale land use effects, which have devastated bee populations.

"Frankly, if we were to do away with coal mining tomorrow, we would still be losing one in every three of our beehives."

A silent concern - and so far, unmeasured - is how much the prices of fruits and vegetables could be affected by the crisis with pollinators, she says.

"The long-term consequences of those price increases end up affecting the poorer populations of our society. When you start pricing fresh food out of their reach, then we're going to pay for it in health care, long-term. "

Beekeepers urge residents to contribute to saving the nation's bee population by reducing the use of yard pesticides, especially in suburban areas.

Horn is working with coal companies to plant a mix of nectar and pollen-producing trees and plants, which bees need to survive, on mountains deforested by mining. She says it will also aid the human food supply, one-third of which comes from sources pollinated by the insects. Horn is author of Bees in America: How the Honeybee Shaped a Nation.



Dan Heyman, Public News Service - WV