The 12th Annual North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC) International Conference was held at EPA headquarters in Crystal City, Va., on Oct. 17-19, to review annual accomplishments and plan new action items.

NAPPC is a collaboration of scientists, researchers, conservationists, government officials and diverse volunteers throughout North America that promotes programs to protect pollinators and to raise pollinator-related issues. Members choose a task force of interest from numerous task force groups. The annual meeting provides an opportunity for task force groups to meet independently for a review of their accomplishments over the previous year and to identify goals for the coming year.

NCC staff participated in the NAPPC Pesticide Task Force, which reported as a previous accomplishment the publication of two brochures targeting pollinator protection and publication of “Pollinator Week,” a public awareness campaign. The task force previewed a video being developed for Pesticide Applicator Continuing Education Credit (CEC). The focus of the video is on best management practices (BMPs) for applicators to protect pollinators. Once finalized, state agencies will determine if viewing the material qualifies as CECs for Pesticide Applicators.

NCC staff urged the task force to consider that BMPs vary across different regions of the country and the proposed focus on “spray at night” should not be promoted as the only BMP. Additionally, NCC staff urged reconsideration of the proposed interpretation of label language for pollinator protection -- commenting that the legal authority for label language and definitions for label language resides with EPA. The task force decided that a regional version of a pesticide applicator training video was appropriate and EPA would be consulted to clarify the meaning of label language.

NAPPC is managed by the 501(c)3 nonprofit Pollinator Partnership (www.pollinator.org). NAPPC partners worked to secure pollinator programs in conservation and research titles of the 2008 farm law, worked with USDA Secretary of Agriculture and with the Senate to create National Pollinator Week at both federal and state levels, and developed more than 31 web-based regional planting guides for pollinator-friendly landscapes.

The 13th Annual NAPPC International Conference will be tentatively hosted by the Dept. of Interior in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 22-24, 2013.