For more than 15 years, the situation has been unequivocal: bee populations are collapsing dangerously, for several reasons: increased use of pesticides, increasing urbanization, decline of natural habitats etc. Bees contribute to the pollination of 80% of flowering and fruit plant species, and therefore to the production of fruit and vegetables, which gives them a key role in maintaining biodiversity.
In conducting its environmental policy, the Port of Rouen has entered a partnership with the integration association "Interm' Aide Emploi", as part of the Happy Culture Citadine project, to install hives on its territory.
Six hives were initially placed in the Rouen port area in a former dredging sediment deposition chamber at Moulineaux. However, they quickly fell victim to the Asian hornet, a major predator of bees which unfortunately is spreading more and more in France. A new site was therefore chosen with the beekeeper in charge of monitoring the hives, still within the port area. Four new hives were installed in 2018.
By placing hives in the heart of industrial port areas, the Port of Rouen and "Happy culture citadine" mean bees can integrate into this fabric and raise public awareness of their protection, which remains, beyond the world of beekeepers, a major environmental and economic challenge.
This approach also allows the port to raise awareness among the company's employees of the need to preserve the environment, and bees in particular.