Global Implication of the Extinction of Bees

Over the past couple of decades, Bee populations have been in decline worldwide and if this decline turns into an extinction then there would be many negative implications. If we try stop this problem now, then it would be beneficial for almost all horticulture and dairy across the globe.

The main reasons of this global extinction is due to the use of toxic pesticides on flowering plants which lead to the bee taking some of it back to the hive and then affecting the whole hive with the pesticide, eventually destroying their home and the entire swarm of bees potentially even other swarms and hives. Varroa Destructor, more commonly known as the Varroa bee mite. These mites attach themselves to the backs of the honeybees and travel with them until they return back to their hives. The mites them find their way to the brood cells and they lay their eggs underneath and begin to feed on the brood. The Varroa mite has the power to weaken whole hives of bees and collapse their brood to further destroy the colony.

The global impact from the extinction of bees will be devastating for all populations of animals and plant life, not just us humans. With the main pollinator of wildflowers worldwide eradicated from our planet, there will need to be a drastic change for the environment to return to a balanced state of life. Three main components will be mainly affected by this tragic global event: Agriculture, Foods and Society as a whole.

Implications on Markets:

In the UK, 30% of all food crops are pollinated by bees and for that to go away would be devastating for supermarkets as most fruit, vegetables, dairy and meat will be no longer available as stock due to the sources being either eradicated or that. Apples, cherries, almonds, blueberries, avocados, broccoli, cucumbers, most leafed vegetables such as spinach, pumpkins, and many others will all be eradicated by the extinction. Our diet will mainly consist of grains like bread and rice and pork, the only fruit and vegetables will be through wind pollination, so vegetables such as corn will still be available. Due to lack of vegetables, the amount of food for farm animals especially cows and sheep will probably be sent to extinction too, or at the very least unable to be harvestable of much meat if any. Due to the lack of almonds there will be a lot less dairy products due feeding the husks of the legume to cows to help them produce milk.

Since a majority of grown fruit and vegetables will be unavailable, most farmers will be stuck to growing corn or wheat as they are the most important wind pollenated plants for humanity’s survival due to wheat being a staple in our current diet. Not only food product will be affected, the production of cotton will also be seized due to it being an insect pollinated plant. Cotton also makes up of 35% of the worlds fibre which limits the clothing materials that can be used over the world. There will be a greater demand for man-made materials for clothing and the price of cotton will greatly rise. Canola and other biofuels will also be unavailable with the extinction of bees as the main ingredients will be no longer available therefore we will rely more on fossil fuels and that will deplete even more rapidly, potentially also becoming unavailable so most commercialised transport will not be able to function, losing thousands of potential jobs.

Implications on Agriculture:

The extinction of bees will not only impact plants, most farm animals will starve due to the lack of nutrients and food, so there will be a lot less of them. Most cows will starve leaving the prices of dairy and meat to skyrocket. Due to the amount of staved livestock most of the meat will look drastically different to what they look like in this day and age, from juicy thick slabs of steak to thin and underdeveloped slivers. Pigs are one of the very few farm animals which do not require feed from the plants bees pollenate so there will be an abundance of pork in the butchery market. Most diets will be based of high pork products and grains, rice and bread. Bees pollinate approximately $30 million worth of food products every year so they are essential for the produce market for fruit, vegetables, dairy and meat to survive and prosper in the following years.

Conclusion

Bees are extremely important and are vital for the survival of many plants and animals over the world which human rely on to survive. The extinction of them would be detrimental globally and we would have to take extreme precautions to make sure that we can sustain ourselves for the years to come.

Reflective Statement

Transdisciplinary Inquiry has been a wild ride for me over the past semester, I really enjoyed the whole theory aspect of team building and dynamics. I felt overall though I didn’t really learn much information through the course which was disappointing. My original idea for this project was to research a bit on phobias and how they can be induced into people but obviously that had some ethical issues surrounding the whole idea of psychologically damaging people. I can now see where Andy was coming from when he told me I couldn’t do it. For my studio project I was doing a project about the conservation of bees and Andy suggested that I incorporate my TransD project into my studio one.

Overall I think that this project was really helpful in the long run for showing me how to conduct proper research for future projects and assignments. Even though I think I could have done better in terms of research for this particular project about bees, I think it’s kind of justified as I did not have as much time to do all the research again for a completely different topic.

I ran into a few issues in this project, mainly to do with being a complete beginner to HTML, I had to learn the very basics and now I think I have a great grasp on them now which is really helpful, especially if I want to go into a field where that is one of the things that is required. One of the more obvious issues I had is that I originally picked an issue which was pretty much impossible to achieve and I knew that. I just thought it was an interesting thing to do, even though I do not have the knowledge or tools to conduct these experiments on people. The changed project went a lot better in the end because it’s something that I think is really important, well it definitely is because if it is not taken care of correctly, the world will be damaged severely.