Risk to pollinators from anthropogenic electro-magnetic radiation (EMR): Evidence and knowledge gaps



Graphical abstract


Fig. 2. The level of scientific knowledge about the impact on pollinators and pollination of natural (a) and anthropogenic (b: ALAN; c: mobile; d: electrical infrastructure) sources of electromagnetic radiation. Based on the available evidence from journal publications, the impact on different aspects of pollinator biology and pollination services are assessed as being positive, negative, neutral or variable (idiosyncratic or contrasting). The level of confidence (quantity, quality and consensus) in this evidence is expressed according to the four-box model adopted from the IPBES (see Fig. 3 for details).

Fig. 3. Position of key messages in relation to the level of confidence (quantity, quality and consensus) in the evidence base using a four-box model for the qualitative communication of certainty (IPBES, 2016). Confidence increases towards the top-right corner as shown by the increased strength of shading. Terms are: Well established – comprehensive meta-analysis or other synthesis or multiple independent studies that agree; Established but incomplete – general agreement although only a limited number of studies exist but no comprehensive synthesis and/or the studies imprecisely address the question; Unresolved – multiple independent studies exist but conclusions do not agree; Inconclusive – limited evidence, recognising major knowledge gaps.

This article arose from an EKLIPSE foresight activity (EKLIPSE grant agreement number 690474, European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme) following a request by the UK charity Buglife (The Invertebrate Conservation Trust https://www.buglife.org.uk/) to produce an evidence assessment relating to the impacts of Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) on invertebrates and other wildlife.