Why bees are so important to our environment - World Bee Day


World Bee Day

This week is National Biodiversity Week and today is World Bee Day. National Biodiversity Week is an opportunity for all of us to connect with our environment and nature, and to motivate others to play their part in protecting it. In AIB we’re playing our part to support Ireland's biodiversity challenge - it’s part of our sustainability agenda.

We have long known the important role bees play in the pollination of crops and supporting our environment. Bees are so important to humans because they pollinate crops such as oilseed rape and most fruit crops like apples, raspberries, blackcurrants and strawberries. The primary issue for bees is a lack of habitat. The idea of establishing a rooftop apiary was born in 2014 between the CEO of Boyne Valley Honey and Head of Capital Markets at AIB, Simon Scroope. It became a reality when the first rooftop apiary in Ireland was established on our then headquarters at Bankcentre, Ballsbridge.

In 2020, the beehives were split across AIB headquarters Molesworth Street and Central Park with Head Beekeeper, Kevin Power, and six trained volunteer staff working to maintain our apiaries. We now have two apiaries with eight to ten hives each, split across our two AIB headquarters in Dublin city. These beehives provide habitat for around 1 million bees at the height of summer. These bees contribute massively to our environment as they pollinate plants, flowers and crops all around the city. And of course, they also provide plenty of honey!

We have taken part in studies with Trinity College on pollen quality and shared our experience to help other organisations set up their own apiaries to become more sustainable. Since 2019 AIB has been investing in The Yield Lab, Europe's largest early-stage AgTech VC fund. Based in Dublin, The Yield Lab invests in companies that are delivering measurable change to the sustainability of agriculture and food production. One of the fund's earliest investments was ApisProtect, a Cork-based company whose technology helps beekeepers protect the health of their bees, while other investments including Microgen Biotech from Carlow are focused on increasing the bio-diversity of the environment, making the production of food more sustainable and reducing the use of chemical fertilisers.

You can help the bees by creating habitat for them simply by not cutting your grass as often or leaving the dandelions to bloom because they’re a great source of nectar and pollen. Find out more about how bees help our environment from Head Beekeeper, Kevin Power, in our video below.

World Bee Day

World Bee Day


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