Ecotricity logotype
/Our news/2022/Help save Britain’s bees

Our news

Article tags
Article tags
  • nature
  • ecotalk
Browse archives
Our news

Help save Britain’s bees

Press enquiries

If you are a journalist with a media enquiry, please contact our Press Office by email at

For all other general enquiries, please call 01453 756 111 or email

15 Mar 2022

Bees are under threat once more. The UK government has again given permission for sugar beet farmers to use the banned pesticide thiamethoxam in England.

Thiamethoxam is a neonicotinoid, a type of pesticide which was banned for agricultural use in the UK and the European Union in 2018 due to the devastating impact it has on bees, our crucial pollinators.

Neonicotinoids have been shown to attack bees’ ability to navigate, gather food and reproduce, putting their colonies at risk of collapse.

The government says these pesticides are needed to prevent the yellows virus, which is spread by aphids, from destroying a significant fraction of the sugar beet crop.

However, the Health and Safety Executive and the UK Government’s own expert committee on pesticides disagree – they say the requirements for neonicotinoid use haven’t been met, and they are also concerned about damage it poses to wildlife in rivers, as well as bees.

Join us in making your voice heard – sign the petition to save bees from deadly pesticides.

Why do we need to save bees?

Bees are essential for our survival, but their numbers have shrunk by 33% in Britain in the past decade alone.

And it’s not just a wildlife disaster – along with other insects like moths and hoverflies, bees pollinate around a third of the food we eat. They also pollinate the plants we use to make our clothes.

Pesticide use, and the loss of wildflower-rich habitats, mean that bee populations have fallen over the last 50 years. We urgently need to stop and reverse this decline.

Bee Facts
What is Ecotricity doing to save bees?

Helping to save bees was one of the founding aims of our green mobile phone service, Ecotalk + RSPB. Under our unique partnership, we use the money from our customers’ phone bills to buy back land for nature and save wildlife.

In July 2019, Ecotalk customers helped the RSPB buy Fairburn Tips, an old dumping ground for coal mining waste in West Yorkshire.

Today, it’s a perfect habitat for bees and other pollinators, with newly-introduced heather taking root to create a lowland heath habitat.

Since the Fairburn Tips purchase, Ecotalk + RSPB customers have helped to buy an extension to the Berney Marshes Nature Reserve – a vital home for migratory waterfowl and breeding waders in Norfolk.

Together, we soon hope to save Horse Common in the New Forest, as well as Wast Neaps on the Island of Yell, Shetland, home to skuas, merlin, snipe and otters.

All this land will be restored and given back to nature, helping plants, pollinators, birds and mammals thrive in a diverse habitat.

Fairburn Tips
B-Lines for bees

The loss of wildflower habitats is a serious problem for the survival of bees and other pollinators, as they’re unable to move across the countryside as our climate and landscape changes. In fact, it’s predicted that 40-70% of species could go extinct if a solution isn’t found.

The B-Lines project is an initiative by our partners, Buglife, creating thousands of ‘insect pathways’ running through the country, along which they’re planting wildflower-rich habitat stepping stones to link existing wildlife areas together.

In this way, bees and other pollinators can move around the countryside once again, making it easier for them to cope with changes in climate.

The B-Lines project is aiming to restore at least 150,000 hectares of flower-rich habitat, and everyone’s invited to play their part – see the initiative website for full details.

How can you help save bees?

First, sign the petition to stop this deadly neonicotinoid pesticide being used once more.
Second, plant a diverse range of flowering plants that come into bloom at different times, so there’s always food available for bees.

Third, switch your mobile phone network to Ecotalk + RSPB. We’ll use money from your bills to buy back land for nature, restoring habitats for all kinds of wildlife, including bees.

Ecotalk + RSPB runs on the EE network, which offers the best coverage in Britain, and you can keep your old number when you switch. Our bundles start at just £5.50 per month – and we power it all with 100% deep green energy from the wind, the sun and the sea.

Visit to find out more.

Similar articles

Ecotricity Explains – What is battery storage?

Getting to 100% renewables isn’t only about building more windmills, sun mills and gasmills. That’s why we’re also building and innovating in the field of energy storage.

Manifesto book with long shadow

Get the book!

Manifesto out now

Dale Vince portrait with bandana

Our founder Dale Vince shares his thoughts on the green revolution

Explore the site

Don’t just take our word for it…

Ecotricity is recommended by
Ethical Consumer Best Buy logo
  • Our story
  • Our mission
  • Our manifesto
  • 29 years of Ecotricity
  • Ecotricity innovation
  • Walking the talk
  • Our partners
  • Our news
  • Your green energy
  • Ecotalk
  • Solar power export
  • Smart meters
  • Britwind
  • Carbon Footprint Calculator
Ecotricity logotype

Climate Clock

The Climate Clock is a version of the Doomsday clock that has been running since 1947 - this tracks the risk of global man-made disaster, through man made technology (like nuclear weapons) - displaying the minutes and seconds left before midnight, when disaster strikes. The climate crisis is a small part of the calculations made.
The climate clock uses a similar approach, but, focuses only on the climate crisis - which is the biggest and most urgent existential threat we face.
"The Climate Clock is a countdown to the biggest man-made disaster we face - but also a measure by which we can track our progress - moving from fossil to renewable energy. It shows we have no time to lose - the clock is ticking…" Dale Vince, OBE.