Environmental costs of cannabis

It requires 70 gallons of diesel fuel to produce one indoor Cannabis plant, or 140 gallons with smaller, less-efficient gasoline generators. In California, the top-producing state, indoor cultivation is responsible for about 3% of all electricity use or 8% of household use, somewhat higher than estimates previously made
for British Columbia.17 This corresponds to the electricity use of 1 million average
California homes, greenhouse-gas emissions equal to those from 1 million average cars, and energy expenditures of $3 billion per year. Due to higher electricity prices and cleaner fuels used to make electricity, California incurs 70% of national energy costs but contributes only 20% of national CO2 emissions from indoor Cannabis cultivation.

From the perspective of individual consumers, a single Cannabis cigarette represents 2 pounds of CO2 emissions, an amount equal to running a 100-watt light bulb for 17 hours assuming average U.S. electricity emissions (or 30 hours on California’s cleaner grid).

The emissions associated with one kilogram of processed Cannabis are equivalent to those of driving across country 5 times in a 44-mpg car. One single production module doubles the electricity use of an average U.S. home and triples that of an average California home. The added electricity use is equivalent to running about 30 refrigerators.

Producing one kilogram of processed Cannabis results in 3,000 kilograms of CO2 emissions. The energy embodied in the production of inputs such as fertilizer, water, equipment, and building materials is not estimated here and should be considered in future assessments.

Source: http://evan-mills.com/energy-associates/Indoor.html April 2011

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