Politico: Cannabis Restrictions are Raising CO2 Emissions

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Politico is worried that restrictions on the transport of Marijuana across state borders is creating distribution network inefficiencies which is helping to drive climate change – by a surprising amount.

An inconvenient truth (about weed)

Federal laws bar cannabis from crossing state lines, driving up the cost — and the emissions — of an industry using indoor grow operations.

By NATALIE FERTIG and GAVIN BADE

08/10/2021 04:30 AM EDT

Nationally, 80 percent of cannabis is cultivated indoors with sophisticated lighting and environmental controls designed to maximize the plant’s yield. It’s a setup that can consume up to 2,000 watts of electricity per square meter, 40 times what it takes for leafy greens like lettuce, when grown indoors.

“For being such a ‘green’ industry, there’s some skeletons in the closet,” said Kaitlin Urso, an environmental consultant with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

Despite piecemeal attempts by states and some growers to reduce their power consumption, at least one expert estimates the industry’s footprint already accounts for more than 1 percent of U.S. electricity consumption and continues to rise. Complicating matters further, federal laws also bar the flow of weed over state lines. That requires companies to grow cannabis in each state where they want to do business and deprives them of the scale that makes other industries more efficient.

One recent model estimated that Massachusetts’ nascent cannabis industry represented 10 percent of the state’s industrial electricity consumption in 2020. Another study found that growing enough bud for a joint — a gram — consumes as much electricity as driving about 20 miles in a fuel-efficient car. Then there’s the still-vibrant illegal market — where there are no emissionsrules whatsoever — that consumes fossil fuels at an even higher rate, often using standalone generators or stealing power from neighbors to fuel their operations.

Read more: https://www.politico.com/news/2021/08/10/weed-cannabis-legalization-energy-503004

Focussing on CO2 emissions from interstate transport seems seems a poor choice of priorities – surely the more pressing problem is all the electricity being used to actually grow the weed?

Mandating that only pure green electricity can be used to grow weed, no cheating by switching to fossil fuel sources if the renewables fail, would buy time to address the problem of distribution network inefficiencies.

With pure green electricity, the indoor weed plants will only receive light when the wind blows or the sun shines, or so long as the battery backup can supply electricity to the grow rooms. And it would be a great test case for moving the entire economy to renewables.

That shouldn’t be a problem right?

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August 13, 2021 2:07 pm

That would be “A Modest Proposal”. Allow anyone who voted for the Green or Democratic Parties in the US to only smoke weed grown according to “renewable” rules.

Gregory Lane
August 13, 2021 2:08 pm

Whoa … More weed cometh. Stoked

Trying to Play Nice
August 13, 2021 2:28 pm

Aren’t these the same morons who want you to source locally?

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
August 13, 2021 6:49 pm

Yes, they are AKA Politically Loco.

Ron Long
August 13, 2021 2:30 pm

Mark, are you suggesting that oil production will stop by 2025? If so, that is a ludicrous position as reserves go far beyond that, not to mention discovery of new fields by ongoing exploration. I’m totally positive there are enough “oil” resources to last until an actual energy substitute is developed, like a flux-gate capacitor.

Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 2:49 pm

I don’t understand why people are being allowed to SMOKE the stuff at all, considering the hullabaloo over tobacco smoke. Put it in a salad. It smells like shit. The entire issue is hypocritical.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 4:37 pm

With tobacco the threat was from the smoke causing cancer. Then, as legalizing marijuana gained steam, smoking was OK as long as it wasn’t tobacco.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Gunga Din
August 13, 2021 4:39 pm

Nicotine became the danger whether delivered via smoke or steam.

Martin Buchanan
Reply to  Gunga Din
August 13, 2021 5:36 pm

Not according to Tucker..

https://youtu.be/K9c-1cavu4M

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Gunga Din
August 13, 2021 5:39 pm

Smoking is smoking. It was never just the tobacco anyway, but likely the various additives used in cigarettes, increasing relative risk. The connection to cancer is statistical only. Nicotine does not cause cancer. “Recent studies have shown that nicotine can affect several important steps in the development of cancer.” So does a host of other things that we commonly ingest without a second thought. The whole tobacco and cancer question is much like AIDS – AGW – Covid hype. 2% facts and 98% skewed statistics and politics.

Most of the damage (and likely cause) arises from inhaling hot gases and depositing toxic foreign particles in the lungs. Marijuana smoke is unfiltered and actually hotter than tobacco smoke. It’s also an intoxicant (very high risk factors). Progressive politicians legalized marijuana pandering to a particular demographic, not because it made any sense.

n.n
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 6:10 pm

The libertarian position is buyer beware, otherwise respect women and men’s dignity and agency. And, yes, the progressive position is constructed on allegations… assertions of diversity… rabid diversity (e.g. racism) past, present, and probably future. As if there could be any other motive.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  n.n
August 13, 2021 7:01 pm

I’m with you completely. Years ago, Germaine Greer was asked what she thought of legalizing marijuana. She quipped, “how much thought have you given to legalizing hard boiled eggs?” Referring, of course, to nanny state governments causing the problem by controlling everything they can. We don’t need all this regulation … and what we do regulate needs strict enforcement.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 7:15 pm

As I see it, there are no good data on chronic pot smokers as they usually did not share that in the past with their doctor or anyone else that didn’t use or find out accidentally, for that matter. It used to be a character-ruining stigma, mostly due to it being associated from early on with indigenous and minority groups.

Nixon had it classified with LSD (as if he had watched ‘Reefer Madness’ personally) and commissioned research where lower primates were subjected to suffocation by cannabis smoke and then results were published that the pot had damaged their brains, not the suffocation by smoke.

As a Libertarian and Centrist, I feel this herb has been unfairly maligned and can benefit modern medicine.

Last edited 2 months ago by Pop Piasa
Rory Forbes
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 13, 2021 7:27 pm

Don’t you see? There’s where your type get it all wrong. You insist on using reason, observation and a balanced view. That’s not only unfashionable, it’s outright subversion. What can we possibly gain from treating adults like grownups?

Like so many other things, regulation has contributed to the problem, not alleviated it. I’m guessing, as the medical benefits are gradually discovered, its recreational importance will fade.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 7:59 pm

Like so many other things, regulation has contributed to the problem, not alleviated it.”

On that note, the D.A.R.E. training that was administered to my (now adult with children) daughter maintained that pot was as dangerous as Heroin. When the kids inevitably tried pot, they found out it was not much different than alcohol, so in many kids’ ignorant though logical views the other forbidden substances also probably weren’t as dangerous as they had been told. Add to that the prescription drug abuse factor and it helps explain the death toll of opiate derivatives nowadays. Just a codger sayin’. 😉

Martin Buchanan
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 13, 2021 8:37 pm

When I was 19, (81-82ish) I had a job as a spa & hot tub field service tech for a spa manufacturer in So. Cal. Was a rare day that went by that I wasn’t offered some amount of Pot by some affluent professional type to “keep the bill down”. That’s when I became truly aware of what a crock what we were taught about pot really was. The management of that company were also all pot smokers, though I realize what they manufactured probably skews that.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Martin Buchanan
August 13, 2021 9:27 pm

There has been an underground society for a century or more of productive citizenry who just happen to use cannabis in their leisure time. Some lines of work are less prone to testing, so they pose less threat of employers disciplining or terminating a cannabis user. One of those in particular is higher education, from my experience.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 14, 2021 5:23 pm

Considering the damage those users have inflicted on a couple of generation of students, maybe canning them for use would be a good idea.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 13, 2021 8:49 pm

Just a codger sayin’.

As a fellow codger it occurs to me how much good sense has been written on this board by the likes of “codgers”. There was a time when we were regarded as the memory of society … the social hard drive or ‘cloud’, so to speak. Now they can’t get rid of us soon enough … or just gaslight us. We remember where all the bodies are buried and it makes the authorities nervous.

You just keep on sayin’ … someone has to.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 14, 2021 4:48 am

All of us Baby Boomers had similar experiences, having been taught that pot-smoking led immediately to heroin addiction and death. Being rebellious kiddos we naturally mostly chose to ignore the threat and delved into the forbidden substances that were all around us on campus. Let’s face it, college is usually one’s first opportunity to be autonomous and once out from under the parental thumb, kids are going to either drink heavily, experiment with drugs, or both.

With the perspective that age bestows, I wish it were not so, that all young adults could sample the forbidden delights in moderation and sanely. Experience has shown otherwise and there will always be the few who go overboard in their new freedom.

As for the opiate addiction problem, there is a lot of well-earned blame to go around and it falls mostly on the heads of Big Pharma, government, and prescribing physicians who care more for the freebies the drug rep gives them than the welfare of their patients!

The book, Dopesick, by Beth Macy explains a lot. https://www.amazon.com/Dopesick-Dealers-Doctors-Company-Addicted-ebook/dp/B078D67JCF/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=dopesick&qid=1628941554&s=books&sr=1-1

BCBill
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 13, 2021 10:29 pm

That would be because you are blissfully ignorant of the science around marijuana use. It has been shown to lower intelligence, lower testosterone levels, increase risk of schizophrenia in the young and smoking it has all the same consequences associated with sucking on a diesel tail pipe. On the plus side it has been shown to provide some relief to a relatively minor form of seizure and it relieves nausea associated with chemotherapy. After thousands of studies which threw out all objectivity in an attempt to find something to support the need to legalise, that’s it, the sum total of its wonderfulness. Now on the other hand, if you have ever had to supervise a crew of pot heads, you have a pretty good idea of what it must be like to teach ducks to knit.

AndyHce
Reply to  BCBill
August 13, 2021 11:47 pm

We should reinstate those good old days when alcohol use was prohibited? It is hard to argue that alcohol use isn’t unhealthy. Light use is just less unhealthy than heavy use. What legitimate business of any legal system is it?

MarkW
Reply to  AndyHce
August 14, 2021 9:17 am

Light to moderate use of wine does seem to be associated with a reduction in heart attacks.

BCBill
Reply to  MarkW
August 14, 2021 12:49 pm

Especially when inlaws are visiting.

BCBill
Reply to  AndyHce
August 14, 2021 12:48 pm

There were really good reasons to limit alcohol consumption. The gin shops of London were destroying its social structure. Alcohol addiction in the U. S. was massive at the onset of prohibition. It turns out that there are several things that are best managed in the grey area between legal and illegal because full legalisation or illegalisation both result in harm. Marijuana, alcohol and abortion all fit in that category. There is a place where something is illegal but the penalties are minor but the minor consequences give people the option to act but with caution. Generally I agree that the government has no right to tell me how to live but some activities, especially those that lead to addiction need to be managed carefully. In hunter gatherer societies we had shamen and spirit guides. Modern legal tradition had grey areas to limit harmful practises to self harm but like so many conservative social structures, grey areas proved to be beyond the intellectual capacity of liberals.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  BCBill
August 14, 2021 4:59 am

Well, teaching ducks to knit would be a breeze compared to working with any group of impaired individuals. Drugs and alcohol, used to excess and when on the job is stupid. But people who do such things are probably not the brightest bulbs on the tree anyway.

Humans have been searching for ways to alter their minds forever. Beer and wine have been around for millennia. The discovery of distillation was not far behind. Eating plants and fungi to alter consciousness is also a time-honored pastime among humans. IMO, the best we can do is teach youngsters to respect their bodies, tell them the truth about substances and their abuse, and set a good example.

BCBill
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
August 14, 2021 12:56 pm

I agree completely and I also think that we should make it difficult to experiment with the more harmful, especially addictive, substances. Though not strongly addictive, the harm done by high marijuana use lasts beyond the high. Like many stereotypes which are based on observation, the unmotivated, forgetful, short attention spanned dope smoker is not just a dramatic devise. We all recognise the stereotype because we have all seen it

Scissor
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 8:00 pm

It’s interesting that vaping is under attack and if done correctly probably makes a less injurious product.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Scissor
August 13, 2021 8:51 pm

I think the complainers have had too much to say and been pandered to far too often. Given the opportunity they’ll ruin everything pleasurable.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 8:58 pm

“Given the opportunity they’ll ruin everything pleasurable.”
I take it “they” means the lawyers, correct?

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 13, 2021 9:02 pm

Yes, the lawyers but also the do-gooders, the busy bodies and the progressive, professional politicians. “Complainers” are also the SJW crowd.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 5:54 am

I can’t find the link but a couple of years ago I read somewhere (JunkScience.com?) that vaping (e-cigarettes) had a much higher success rate in helping people quit tobacco than any other method out there.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Gunga Din
August 14, 2021 1:07 pm

Gunga Din

Reply to 

Scissor

 August 14, 2021 5:54 am

I can’t find the link but a couple of years ago I read somewhere (JunkScience.com?) that vaping (e-cigarettes) had a much higher success rate in helping people quit tobacco than any other method out there.

Just to be clear, I wasn’t talking about vaping TCH.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 6:00 am

“It’s interesting that vaping is under attack and if done correctly probably makes a less injurious product.”

The problem is not vaping. The problem is what they are vaping, which is all sorts of unnecessary chemicals mixed in with the marijuana.

If they just vaped straight marijuana, they wouldn’t be having all those lung problems that have popped up. I think the producers of these vaping mixtures have cleaned up their act a little, but I wouldn’t touch their product with a ten-foot pole. They add in chemicals for optics purposes, just to make a lot of smoke. That’s how ridiculous it is.

It’s the same with tobacco. If a person vaped tobacco, they would not be taking in the by-products caused by burning tobacco, which is where the health problems come from.

You don’t need pre-mixed chemical concoctions to vape tobacco or marijuana. In fact, you should stay away from them for health reasons.

Sean Hannity should stop promoting the Juul vaporizer. What are you putting in your lungs, Sean? You probably don’t know. It’s not just tobacco, Sean.

Last edited 2 months ago by Tom Abbott
Scissor
Reply to  Tom Abbott
August 14, 2021 7:20 am

Yeah, not doing drugs would be the safest alternative.

Not to put vitamin E acetate into vape cartridges was an expensive lesson learned, measured in lost life and suffering.

Juul by the way is 35% owned by Altria (Philip Morris).

MarkW
Reply to  Tom Abbott
August 14, 2021 9:20 am

Vaping has nothing to do with marijuana or tobbaco.
It uses a heater to vaporize a liquid. What is put into the liquid is usually nicotine and something to give it flavor.
I suspect it would be possible to add THC to the liquid, but I know of no places that are doing this.

Scissor
Reply to  MarkW
August 14, 2021 10:34 am

Vaping of THC is a multi-billion dollar industry, though a lot of it is underground, so its size is not known with certainty.

BCBill
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 10:17 pm

Legalisation of marihuana is a keystone policy in the new world order. Imagine you have millions of underemployed young men with no hope of owning their own homes or raising families . Why that could lead to revolution. Now imagine you have millions of young men sitting around stoned, playing video games while their testosterone levels and i.q.s drop (welcome to Canada). Trudeau is happily reelected, AOC is made President and Bill Gates saves the world with his awesome programming skills and generous contributions to the WHO, for which he expects nothing in return other than undying obedience. We must use reliable coal power to grow marihuana as it is essential to the plan.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  BCBill
August 14, 2021 10:12 am

You do understand when it is clear that when you work out their plan too early they put you on a watch list, don’t you? What might have sounded like a mad conspiracy theory only a few years ago is now not only credible; it’s almost a certainty if we don’t pull our fingers out soon. That’s especially true when you hear Trudeau declaring his admiration for the likes of Xi.

AndyHce
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 11:39 pm

What didn’t, and still doesn’t, make any sense is politicians ever getting involved at all.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  AndyHce
August 14, 2021 10:15 am

It makes more sense when you read BCBill’s response to me, this morning (just above).

n.n
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 6:06 pm

Perhaps this is a planned puffer scheme hiding in plain sight. Some carbon particulates are healthier than others.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  n.n
August 13, 2021 7:07 pm

Some carbon particulates are healthier than others.

What I’ve learned about cancer (as a survivor) and pathogens in general is; there is rarely a single causal factor. Our lungs (all organs) are subjected to unremitting attacks by all sorts of things, mostly bad. It’s the sum of them all combined with all sorts of ancillary factors that does us in. Too much of anything can be a problem.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 7:40 pm

“Everything in moderation” was what my dad lived by and saw 90 years, despite our family history of early heart-related mortality.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 13, 2021 8:58 pm

Although it’s a dead certainty I won’t see 90, the years I have had were mostly enjoyed with sound body and excellent health. I’ve learned that trying things provided great enrichment, but limiting the experience or even eschewing further trials has allowed me the opportunity to try many more things. The only thing that can outsmart mortality is having no regrets.

Joel Snider
Reply to  Rory Forbes
August 13, 2021 6:30 pm

It’s also highly carcinogenic, which was the whole point of the argument against tobacco.
I personally don’t care – drink, smoke, poison yourself all you like.
See, I’m one of those unreasonable crazy types that think people should live how they want, even if it’s not necessarily in their own best interests.
Although I do get tired of the self-serving bullshit constantly spouted by the progressive propaganda/media that pretends to be journalists.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Joel Snider
August 13, 2021 7:16 pm

I’m in 100% agreement. The only codicil is, if you plan doing it around me, take it down a notch and use moderation. Over regulation makes babies of adults because they eventually expect permanent minding … giving governments exactly what they want, complete control. The precautionary principle gets applied to everything.

Busy bodies give me an itch I can’t scratch …

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”
CS Lewis

Every time I think about covid “precautions” I’m reminded of that quote.

Mark Kaiser
August 13, 2021 2:49 pm

 Complicating matters further, federal laws also bar the flow of weed over state lines. That requires companies to grow cannabis in each state where they want to do business and deprives them of the scale that makes other industries more efficient.

This stuff bothers me. I get the economies of scale with relation to labour/profits etc. But how does that apply to energy usage. If I grow twice as much pot in my factory do I not basically need twice as much light?


John Bell
Reply to  Mark Kaiser
August 13, 2021 3:32 pm

Put solar panels on the floors and walls and get some energy back.

Mark Kaiser
Reply to  John Bell
August 13, 2021 4:31 pm

They did it Spain a few years back. Put up searchlights for the solar panels to generate solar power during the night.

n.n
Reply to  Mark Kaiser
August 13, 2021 6:11 pm

Recycled energy with progressive (i.e. monotonically reductive) returns. Nice.

Pop Piasa
Reply to  n.n
August 13, 2021 9:36 pm

They passed those costs on to the customers I would think.

LdB
Reply to  Pop Piasa
August 14, 2021 8:03 am

They were feed in tariff farming 🙂

Last edited 2 months ago by LdB
MarkW
Reply to  Mark Kaiser
August 14, 2021 9:23 am

Perhaps in southern climes they can supplement the artificial lighting with natural lighting?

Tom Abbott
August 13, 2021 2:55 pm

Why don’t they just require the growers to use Sunshine! Directly.

I think the crime cartels are getting heavily involved in this business. Oklahoma requested $5 million from the Feds recently for use in rooting out criminal gangs growing marijuana in the State.

Stopping illegal aliens from growing marijuana in the U.S., would cut back the use of electricity, and would help in other areas, too.

That’s made more difficult with a wide-open Southern border, like we have today, though.

Thanks for nothing, Biden.

Scissor
Reply to  Tom Abbott
August 13, 2021 7:45 pm

They could but it wouldn’t be beneficial to users. Hemp, marijuana’s cousin, is grown outdoors but there it is subject to pests, weeds, and the weather. Indoor growing avoids these issues and leading to a more attractive product, one in which is exposed to fewer herbicides and pesticides.

Additionally, in Colorado there is only one outdoor growing season, whereas indoor grows can be operated continuously.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 5:13 am

In my travels through all 48 of the contiguous states, I have seen Cannabis growing wild all over where there is moisture in the soil. In Wisconsin they call it Ditch Weed. In Nebraska it grows along the Platte river. It is the second biggest cash crop in Virginia and I have seen plants over 2 M tall. Pot farms are hidden inside forests, making it easy for hikers to stumble across.

The primary reason for growing indoors under lights is to avoid detection by law enforcement. The added bonus is year-round cropping.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
August 14, 2021 6:08 am

Good points, Pamela.

Scissor
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
August 14, 2021 7:31 am

A problem with ditch weed is that much of it is hemp (especially the tall stuff), remnants from before WWII when the U.S. was a major producer. Hippies will likely be disappointed in smoking it.

A simple, somewhat reliable test, to distinguish hemp from marijuana is to take a bud and extract it with a few mL of vodka or absolute ethanol. Then, separate the plant material, and to the liquid add a couple of drops of liquid Drano (or a couple of beads of sodium or potassium hydroxide). If it’s hemp, then the liquid will turn purple within a few minutes. If it’s marijuana, it’ll stay water white or maybe just become slightly colored pink or light purple.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 8:58 am

That is probably the only way to tell the difference between hemp and smoking grass. They are the same plant, it is just that over the centuries people have selected for strains with more THC and preserved those strains.

Before I left Virginia there was a big movement among farmers to be allowed to grow hemp as a cash crop. It is a valuable fiber and the US imports it from other countries. Tobacco growers wanted to use their tobacco allotments to grow hemp instead. Tobacco is an expensive crop to grow, it exhausts the soil, is labor-intensive, and can be ruined by bad weather at harvest. Hemp, by contrast, is dead easy to grow and is planted tight so it doesn’t branch, resulting in nice long fibers.

And this is the main difference between hemp and pot. Smoking hemp needs to be planted with distance between the plants and rows and encouraged to branch, thereby producing multiple budding heads.

Scissor
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
August 14, 2021 10:38 am

Technically, hemp growing in the U.S. has been legalized by the 2018 Farm Bill. Some states are resisting, however.

Where it’s legal, one can find testing labs that can determine the potency of cannabis, giving the concentration and types of cannabinoids present. Average price for this testing would be about $50/sample.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 2:01 pm

Very interesting. I left Virginia and the US before this passed but am happy for my farmer friends who wanted to stop growing tobacco and move into hemp. Thanks for the information. Do you know if Virginia is a state that resisted?

Scissor
Reply to  Pamela Matlack-Klein
August 14, 2021 5:26 pm

It’s legal but but highly regulated it seems.

https://www.vdacs.virginia.gov/plant-industry-services-hemp.shtml

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Scissor
August 15, 2021 2:33 am

Thanks for the link. Looks like they are also allowed to grow pot and sell it in shops. A lot has changed in the years since I became an expat!

gringojay
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 1:08 pm

Adding the sodium hydroxide is causing a reaction with the oils (ex: THC content of marijuana solubilized into alcohol) causing saponification (making a form of soap as evidenced by the white color changes). The purple color occurs when sodium hydroxide dissolves a chloroplast protein (plastocyanin) and then there is a reaction with the copper (plastocyanin has copper in it).

Scissor
Reply to  gringojay
August 14, 2021 5:26 pm

No. How did you come up with that?

The hydroxide promotes oxidation and the formation of HU-331, which is the hydroxy quinone of CBD that is highly colored. Ethanol is needed to make the hydroxide and cannabinoids soluble.

gringojay
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 10:04 pm

Hi Scissor, – I have not run your tests and responded initially considering the vagueness of color inferences. Which means that I am prepared to be mistaken.

Your premise seems to be that irregardless that both marijuana “pot” and hemp both have really low levels (strain specific) of CBD only one forms the “highly colored” hydroxy-quinone of CBD as a distinguishing identification. I don’t see that as a logical, but then it is not something I work with.

Precursor compounds like benzo-quinone converts to hydroxy-quinone, although I can’t say how hemp and marijuana “pot” differ in their ratios of precursor molecules. Yes, chlorophyll can be oxidized and quinones/hydro-quinones can take up the electrons shed by chlorophyll causing pigment change.

Scissor
Reply to  gringojay
August 15, 2021 5:52 am

It’s called the Beam test if you are interested. It relies on CBD and CBDA making hydroxy quinones while THC and THCA do not. There can be some subjectivity involved for some samples, of course.

https://books.google.com/books?id=q5yFCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA676#v=onepage&q&f=false

AndyHce
Reply to  Tom Abbott
August 13, 2021 11:57 pm

If it weren’t for the stupid government restrictions, there would be no market for illegal drugs. Before they were illegal they were too cheap to attract criminal production.

MarkW
Reply to  AndyHce
August 14, 2021 9:26 am

Prohibition created the mafia. Drug laws created the various cartels.

stinkerp
August 13, 2021 3:16 pm

Funny how marijuana advocacy studies are rife with poor methodology and conclusions. It’s almost as if what we were told as kids is true: marijuana makes you stupid.

Although it’s heartwarming to see socialist pot heads discovering that production and supply chains are more efficient in a free market than one constrained by socialists.

DonM
Reply to  stinkerp
August 13, 2021 3:44 pm

marijuana makes you stupid.

Cause and effect … or effect and cause. For most of the people I have been around, stupid is the lead.

Martin Buchanan
Reply to  DonM
August 13, 2021 5:42 pm

…as if there’s not a large cohort of relatively brilliant pot smokers.

DonM
Reply to  Martin Buchanan
August 16, 2021 12:38 pm

By relative, you mean what.

Percentage of ‘brilliant’ people that smoke pot?

Percent of ‘average’ people that smoke pot?

Percent of ‘stupid’ people that smoke pot?

Answer the above. The ‘relatively’ you use only relates to ‘more than you would guess’. But relative to the cohort percent of dummies, theys not many brilliant people altering their brain chemistry, on a regular basis, with THC.

commieBob
Reply to  stinkerp
August 13, 2021 5:09 pm

Advocacy studies of all sorts are rife with poor methodology and conclusions.

When I saw the figure for the percent of electricity used to grow pot, I wondered how much electricity is used by bitcoin so I googled,

bitcoin percent electricity

I discovered there are almost as many ways to spin the numbers as there are websites.

Wade
Reply to  stinkerp
August 13, 2021 5:41 pm

I have several members of my family who smoke cannabis. Considering who they were before they smoked it and considering who they are now, there is nothing you can say that would make me believe this stuff is healthy. In any amounts. For any reason.

I also realize that tobacco is also unsafe at any amount as well. I am not arguing that tobacco is safer than marijuana. I am saying that anybody who says marijuana is good for you is lying.

Popular Technology.net: 150+ Scientific Studies Showing the Dangers of Marijuana

Last edited 2 months ago by Wade
AndyHce
Reply to  Wade
August 13, 2021 11:59 pm

There are many more than 150 studies saying CO2 is dangerous.

commieBob
Reply to  AndyHce
August 15, 2021 2:16 am

You’re absolutely right, and they’re done by the best scientists money can buy.

The current situation is that bad science is rewarded* and good science is repressed (remember Climategate).

*You can’t get a full time continuing job in academia without publishing. Journal editors are looking for interesting, novel, research results. There’s no punishment for being wrong. p-hacking The result is that the vast majority of published research findings are false and can’t be replicated. (The outright cooking of data and plagiarism are still punished. If bad research is exposed, retraction can be forced, so the system isn’t completely broken.)

Bruce Cobb
August 13, 2021 3:30 pm

I’ve come up with a great slogan for cannabis: “This bud’s for you”.
What!

Scissor
Reply to  Bruce Cobb
August 13, 2021 7:49 pm
J Mac
August 13, 2021 3:44 pm

Excessive regulation of marijuana is the cause of climate change?
Dude – time to back away from the bong. Really.

August 13, 2021 3:53 pm

The purification of CBD and Hash oil from ground up buds typically uses copious amounts of butane as the solvent, which is then evaporated off to leave behind the pure oil. Butane(g) is a very potent GHG.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
August 13, 2021 4:45 pm

Ohhh, mannn, that’s such a downer, Dude!

Dave Walker
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
August 13, 2021 7:49 pm

Even worse than you thought- most the concentrates use super critical extraction with……CO2!

Reply to  Dave Walker
August 13, 2021 8:21 pm

I know coffee grinders use super-crit CO2 to extract caffeine from the beans before roasting. But I think butane is more effective at stripping out the Hash oil than CO2.

DonM
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
August 17, 2021 10:12 am

The sensitive processors tell me that using butane is a terrible way to go and it should not be allowed.

The guys putting in the “explosion proof” enclosures don’t agree.

Scissor
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
August 13, 2021 7:54 pm

Especially, among people making hash oil at home, butane is used and released in the air, also making it an explosion hazard.

Commercially, extraction solvents are recycled, including butane, of course there are fugitive emissions. CO2 is also a favored solvent as is ethanol.

Reply to  Scissor
August 13, 2021 8:23 pm

Organic Chemistry 221: butane hydrophobicity is higher than super-crit CO2. Thus it is more efficient at removing oils from the buds.

Scissor
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
August 14, 2021 4:17 am

True.

It’s likely that terpenes act as a cosolvent with CO2 helping to make cannabinoids more soluble, but still the pressures involved make the processing equipment expensive.

Definitely, hydrophobic solvents are favored all things being equal, but flammability is of concern. I’ve seen a claim that propane can be used to extract biomass wet.

gringojay
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 12:07 pm

There are many different solvents used in chemistry which are categorized according to their respective degree of being what is called polar &/or non-polar. What should be better understood is that each individual solvent’s chemical composition “extracts” different ratios of composite compounds from any one substrate (ex: generic crude cannabis matter).

The specific solvent chosen for any chemical extraction is sometimes determined by the operation’s equipment limitations and also the level of skill the extraction operator(s) bring to the actual process. Butane has notoriety for clandestine extraction use not only because of how it works, but also because butane is available over-the-counter (99% ethanol is not usually available to the general public and for that matter extracts different ratios of compounds from green plant matter than butane – for example ethanol additionally solubilizes chlorophyll into an extract).

Scissor
Reply to  gringojay
August 14, 2021 5:35 pm

Yes, ethanol makes chlorophyll soluble and ironically gives the product a “grass” like flavor. It also negatively impacts color. It helps to cool the ethanol to -50C or even lower, but as you and Joel indicate the oil isn’t as clean as can be had with alkanes.

They used to sell denatured ethanol here at Home Depot. If one had a clandestine lab, he would be able to obtain ethanol on the black market.

gringojay
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 10:59 pm

I would not be surprised if commercial extraction equipment was now more designed for using the industrial solvent hexane than butane. Both are “non-polar” solvents and hexane can be (mostly) recaptured.

If one has a clandestine lab then they probably know how to distill cheap store bought vodka to get 98-99% concentrated ethanol from it. But clandestine chlorophyll taste-free butane extracts are now commonly made – so alcohol extractors would need to fiddle around processing it further with something like hexane to separate the chlorophyll before marketing.

AndyHce
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
August 14, 2021 12:00 am

butter works

Scissor
Reply to  AndyHce
August 14, 2021 4:21 am

For the toasted…

Videodrone
August 13, 2021 3:55 pm

Two things to note;

1) Here in NorCal (Mendocino) the cartel growers are stealing all the water on several watersheds (not going to mention the idiocy of the state who 3 years ago had overflowing lakes with 5-7 years of supply that are now down to puddles)

and

2) Several of the indoor/greenhouse growers bring the CO2 up to 1% during growth

gringojay
Reply to  Videodrone
August 13, 2021 5:25 pm

Should anyone want to try parsing the upstream ecological costs associated with subsequent CO2 supplementation in a greenhouse consider the input involved in the following tactics. One (1) pound of dry ice is needed in a 10 ft. x by 10 ft. greenhouse to create 1,300 ppm CO2. For CO2 “generators” using propane or natural gas the energy equivalent to 5 ounces of ethyl alcohol (ETOH) is needed in a 10 ft. by 20 ft. greenhouse to create 1,300 ppm CO2. These are usually the easiest reliably set ppm supplemental CO2 strategies to install economically in greenhouses; other methods tend to have higher initial equipment outlay (with the cheap fermentation bucket tactic being less commercially practical for a tightly controlled supplemental ppm CO2 level).

MarkW
Reply to  gringojay
August 14, 2021 9:30 am

And for some reasons millions of green house owners keep doing it because they are convinced it is cost effective.

gringojay
Reply to  MarkW
August 14, 2021 11:41 am

Hi MarkW – It may be worth noting the following about the more scientifically educated among the millions of green house growers’ use of supplemental CO2.

Quote: ” … adding CO2 1-2 hours after sunrise… [and] … stopping 2-3 hours before sunset is the ideal duration of supplementation since plants are photosynthetically active 1-2 hours after sunrise peak and 2-3 p.m. … [and] … younger plants are more responsive to supplemental CO2 than more mature plants ….” As per Oklahoma State University Extension Bulletin Id. HLA-6723 “Greenhouse Carbon Dioxide Supplementation”.

August 13, 2021 4:00 pm

This is crazy.

guard4her
August 13, 2021 4:01 pm

The stuff is a weed and grows like crazy naturally. It could be grown and harvested cheaper than hay. The only reason for the huge green houses, controlled environment, huge lights, heating, etc. is the limt on planting forces growers to increase the potency as much as possible to make any money. Each individual plant is registered in this state. This is ridiculous.
As usual, government is destroying the environment.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  guard4her
August 14, 2021 5:18 am

Amen!

TomO
August 13, 2021 4:13 pm

Wildfires spread COVID

… The San Francisco Chronicle gets a jump on The Guardian

– I prefer the farts theory

Last edited 2 months ago by TomO
Pop Piasa
Reply to  TomO
August 13, 2021 9:47 pm

Are you sure it didn’t just say COVID spreads like wildfire?

Gunga Din
August 13, 2021 4:13 pm

Uhh…so the CAGW (Now the “Green New Deal”.) message needs more drugs to be more easily distributed for it to be accepted?

PS. Please don’t try to tell me that marijuana is harmless. Been there. Done that (a lot!) in my youth.

Rob_Dawg
August 13, 2021 4:45 pm

The Howeling’s Tomato Greenhouses in Ventura County wer recently sold for all cash and will become the largest indoor grow-op in the nation.

Map: https://www.google.com/maps/@34.1809443,-119.0861297,1417m/data=!3m1!1e3

Feel free to zoom in until you can get a sense of scale.

AGW is Not Science
August 13, 2021 6:01 pm

I think they should only grow it using coal fired power plant electricity; more CO2 will help it grow better! No subsidies required!

MarkW
Reply to  AGW is Not Science
August 14, 2021 9:39 am

I don’t remember the names of the companies.
Company A was a company that raised tropical fish.
Company B was a company that used water to cool various industrial processes.

Company B had a problem, because of environmental regulations, they couldn’t just dump their hot water, it had to be cooled first.
Company A had a problem. It cost a lot of money to keep the water in their tanks warm enough for the fish they were growing to thrive.

Solution, Company A located itself next to Company B, and bought Company B’s hot water, which it used to keep it’s tanks warm (I presume they used a heat exchanger).

The cost to buy the water was less than the cost to heat the water with gas or electricity.
Company B no longer had to pay to cool their waste water, and in fact got revenue from it.

This is capitalism in action.

n.n
August 13, 2021 6:03 pm

First, marijuana restrictions with diversitist (e.g. racist) intent. Now, marijuana restrictions are a first-order forcing of [catastrophic] [anthropogenic] climate cooling… warming…. change. Clever. Creative without repercussions.

That said, they may, correctly, believe that they can abort the baby, cannibalize her… his… whatever profitable parts, sequester her carbon pollutants, and have her, too. One step forward, two steps backward.

Dennis
August 13, 2021 7:58 pm

I wonder what Politico is smoking ?

Dave Walker
August 13, 2021 8:00 pm

We have Medical in Hawaii. The 8 licensed dispensaries must grow indoors by law. Patients with a card can grow 10 plants outside or in. Great use of solar to put enough light on the plant at night to keep it vegetative. Once they get tall enough remove the lamp and the sun will grow the best buds on Earth, sucking up CO2 like crazy. Just grow your own medicine, outdoors.
The trend in commercial is towards extracts, which can be made from any weed, big beautiful buds not required. Someday it will be produced in 1000 acre fields in Nebraska or someplace, and extracted with closed circuit CO2.

gringojay
Reply to  Dave Walker
August 14, 2021 12:38 am

Commercial “extract” processors want substrate (“weed”) sourced from producers growing plants with reliably characteristic chemical compound profiles. The processors’ PhD chemists have selective goals of end products and want their extraction apparatus working at the ideal cost benefit level.

The multi-million dollar investment ventures don’t want to bother with just any “weed” because not every strain has the relevant compound(s) they are working with in desirable enough proportion(s) to bother dedicating equipment operational time (& solvent) to when their large scale production runs can be better spent on specifically selected substrate (“weed”). This is now agribusiness, unlike the small American operators who were making modest sized clandestine “extract” batches from someone’s weed that was being sold in the medical marijuana dispensaries & by dealers – usually sold profiled for having a concentrated content of the psycho-active pot compound THC.

Scissor
Reply to  gringojay
August 14, 2021 4:24 am

Do you know of any strains especially high in THCV?

Steve Keohane
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 5:03 am

Durbin Poison and Zamaldelica allegedly do. The THCV is from wild or ‘land-race’ African strains, of which the DP is and the Zam is crossed with.

Scissor
Reply to  Steve Keohane
August 14, 2021 7:36 am

Thanks, I’ll look into those.

Would you agree that THCV is an appetite suppressant and also somewhat raises metabolism?

Steve Keohane
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 7:59 am

I’ve neither heard nor experienced appetite suppression, While I have not looked at it as raising metabolism, it does make one want to get physically active, and leaves one very clear-headed. The last is diametrically opposed to the usual perception of the influence of marijuana, but is the actual effect.

DonM
Reply to  Steve Keohane
August 17, 2021 10:20 am

Some people like Kratom.

I’ve never tried it.

gringojay
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 12:28 pm

Hi Scissor, – No in response to your question; I neither use cannabis, grow it, nor am involved in the industry. I’d like to point out that biological uptake of cannabis derivatives by our system can not be deemed linear, nor identically via different methods of intake.

For example: an ingested mg dose CBD does not equate to that amount of CBD mg being physiologically utilizable. Taken orally that drop off is unfortunately extremely steep if care to search for an estimated % [sorry, but couldn’t find it in my old notes]?

Scissor
Reply to  gringojay
August 14, 2021 5:40 pm

Yes, that’s another reason why people smoke the stuff to begin with. Sublingual is another route that avoids P-450 liver metabolism on the first pass.

Dosing is problematic for sure and gets newbies into trouble, particularly with edibles. They eat part of a cookie or brownie and don’t feel anything, then eat the whole thing. In an hour or so they are overdosing.

gringojay
Reply to  Scissor
August 14, 2021 11:34 pm

Mother in her 80’s prevailed upon a care-giver to give her the marijuana edible another care-giver who knew an edible maker had once gotten for mother, who insisted she wanted to try that for her pain. The doctor in the hospital said they saw a lot of people who’d self-dosed, had panic-anxiety attacks and essentially got spooked by their heart rate.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Dave Walker
August 14, 2021 6:22 am

“Once they get tall enough remove the lamp and the sun will grow the best buds on Earth”

A lot of marijuana seeds from Vietnam made their way to Hawaii in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Some people claim Vietnamese marijuana is the best in the world.

Craig W
August 14, 2021 1:54 am

“… driving up the cost of an industry using INDOOR grow operations.”
Growing pot indoors is environmentally sound?

Peta of Newark
August 14, 2021 3:06 am

Mind yer back – Devils Avocado Mode incoming, you have been warned…

1) Slightly as an aside: In my younger days I was acquainted with a number of folks who ‘did’ cannabis.
They were all also cigarette smokers and every last one of them said that it was cannabis smoking that got them onto nicotine,
Every Single One
(One might launch a conspiracy theory there if one was so inclined)

2) It dawned on me, just recently, that it is actually impossible to ‘exist’ in the modern (western) world without being constantly and chemically ‘out of your head’

Almost every waking hour of every day we are eating/drinking/smoking ‘something‘ that promotes the release of Dopamine (maybe also Serotonin) inside our heads.

And NO, you can not ‘handle’ those things – the drug is doing the talking if you assert as much
And NO, we are not evolved to consume that stuff (I’m looking at sugar and cooked starch especially there

OK, fine. Dopamine makes you happy, makes you feel good, comfortable, cosy, warm, wanted, useful
But only in the immediate hour or so after consumption of whatever drug.

Then, you go into a Dopamine Low – and The Only Thing on your mind is when, where how you will next get some more Dopamine.
Seeking Dopamine becomes your only goal. All day. Every day

Why? Why is constant chemically enhanced happiness necessary?

Especially worse, for everyone around you that is, you become physically/mentally sleepy, depressed, irritable, lazy yet ‘short of time, self-important, buck-passing, belligerent & argumentative until you get some more ‘drug
Then you become happy & passive, again.
For an hour, then……

Is it any wonder that science, education, politics, media, personal relationships. physical & mental health are all falling apart
Even before anyone mentions the horrible effects those chemicals/drugs have on the physical frame.

Is that Your Definition of ‘Never Better’ = relentless & absolute dependence on Happiness Inducing Chemicals

An yanno wot, sum of uz might include oil (coal also?) in that list of ‘happy’ chemicals

But, oil makes CO2 and CO2 makes chemically depressed people

feel guilty.
the human animal cannot lie

So what do they do, try to blame the CO2 for their guilt.
Equal to water as The Most Important stuff in this entire Universe
Yet they want to make CO2 ‘go away’, to capture it, to bury it, to convert it to ‘something good’

It Could Hardly Get Any More Crazy – but the Addicts know how to ‘fix’ that
Positive Feedback Rules OK
It also destroys. Completely.

Last edited 2 months ago by Peta of Newark
2hotel9
August 14, 2021 3:29 am

If it is such a scary problem why7 don’t they just grow their own at home. Problem solved, disaster averted.

Ed wolfe
Reply to  2hotel9
August 14, 2021 5:21 am

Interesting fact
pot growing consumed 10% of generated power in ma
keep the lights on

2hotel9
Reply to  Ed wolfe
August 14, 2021 9:13 am

Once it is legal you grow outside, sans electricity! And its green! And sustainable! Just not a downside to be found.

Ray
Reply to  2hotel9
August 14, 2021 5:03 pm

The biggest reason that people grow indoors is to control pollination. A hemp field within a couple of miles will seed up a crop that was worth a lot of money and cut the value significantly. There are a lot of other factors of course, but keeping their flowers seed free is a big one.

2hotel9
Reply to  Ray
August 15, 2021 3:38 am

Where in MA is there a field of hemp? Other than keeping the neighbor kids fingers off it there is no reason not to grow outside for personal consumption. Humor, get some.

Andy Pattullo
August 14, 2021 10:07 am

Since the product in question will ultimately be combusted to produce CO2 emissions but no useable energy, I think the same arguments apply even more to the lack of pipelines for liquid fuels which similarly will be combusted, but in this case producing both CO2 emissions and energy that makes all our lives better.

Fred the Head
August 14, 2021 5:21 pm

The “best” marijuana are hot, wet female plants oozing from their ripe reproductive organs. A whiff of pollen and they become seeded and significantly less intoxicating,

John the Econ
August 15, 2021 5:01 pm

Clearly these people have never seen an actual grow operation, most of which are required to be indoors, (for security reasons) use immense amounts of electricity, water, chemicals, and even CO2.

Jeff Corbin
August 16, 2021 6:58 am

More munchies means more spontaneous emissions of hydrocarbon fuel… a factor not considered. LOL America would be one of the slinkiest places on earth if we all consumed marijuana as widely and as intensely as some revenue hungry liberal and conservative libertarians would like us to. Boo marijuana, the stuff will rot your brain. The America public is being doop’d again.

Jeff Corbin
Reply to  Jeff Corbin
August 16, 2021 7:49 am

” Rot your Brain” I am too old to be duped by the Legalize Marijuana crap. All my friends (15 people) smoked marijuana in 1972. By 1980, only 5 continued to smoke Marijuana daily. By 1990,only 4 continued to smoke daily, and were the lowest wage earners of the 15, two had problems with psychosis. All 4 had short term memory problems and spend most of their time in front of the TV. By 2000, 4 continued to smoke daily, 3 were in poverty. 2010 3 continued to smoke marijuana and remained in poverty, the other passed away at 47 from sleep apnea. The remaining 10 people who stopped smoking marijuana never had psychosis, are still alive, live vibrant fully integrated lives compared to the chronic marijuana users. How is that for a naturalistic scientific study…. which is no worse than the crap science of the pro-marijuana charlatans. You may say alcohol is just as bad….but I don’t think so. Maybe 8-9% are effected by alcoholism at the most…2-5% will recover. But marijuana thoroughly clocked 1/3 of my friends for life in subtle and insidious ways yet the end result is unmistakable…… a life wasted…dude! Ever hear of a marijuana addict go the NA or get clean and sober…. it just hardly every happens. Are narcotics (Marijuana) legal in China, South Korea, Brazil, India, Vietnam… not on your life… they know they can’t compete in global market place with a obtunded work force….. but America…. we have given up on a work force the competes… we don’t care if they obtunded poorly educated smartphone serfs. Libertinism is anarchy for the rich and the tax hungry.

Jeff Corbin
Reply to  Jeff Corbin
August 16, 2021 8:14 am

I mean ‘t stinky, not slinky

Jeff Corbin
August 16, 2021 7:34 am

Are narcotics (Marijuana) legal in China, South Korea, Brazil, India, Vietnam? Not on your life! They know they can’t compete in global market place with a obtunded work force. Yet in America, it seems we have given up on a work force that competes? Do we as American’s care if our workforce is obtunded and poorly educated smartphone serfs; that is obtunded by marijuana and/or hand held devices. Libertarianism is anarchy for the rich and the tax hungry. I am not sure why liberals and/or conservatives have been so captured by libertarian anarchy and/or leftist anarchy. The former is rooted in greed, the later is rooted 19th century romance drama. It’s time to move on from stupid greed and the drama of anarchy.

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