AUSTIN, Texas — Austin City Council voted Thursday to prohibit a chemical commonly used for pest control on city lands. 

Agenda item 71, sponsored by Councilwoman Alison Altar, bans the use of a pesticide called Chlorpyrifos.

According to Texas Public Interest Research Group, the ordinance also bans the use of bee-killing neonics and possible carcinogen glyphosate (the main ingredient in Roundup). The new policy also affirms that contractors who apply pesticides inside city buildings do so in accordance with the city’s IPM policy. 

According to the Texas Public Interest Research Group, the global population of bee colonies shrinks by 30-40 percent each year, even though bees are responsible for pollinating food like apples, broccoli, coffee beans, and chocolate.

Bees also pollinate one of the main foods that cows eat, alfalfa, which means we could struggle to produce meat and dairy products as well.

“I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live in a world without coffee and chocolate,” says

“Bees are an important part of our food supply and ecosystem, and we need to protect them with common sense solutions like this one,” said Bay Scoggin, TexPIRG state director.

“We thank Councilwoman Altar for her leadership on this issue,” Scoggin added. “It’s good to know that with all the buzz surround this issue, someone important is listening.”