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orange
04-15-2011, 05:30 PM
Marijuana Carbon Footprint: Indoor Pot Production Uses 1 Percent Of U.S. Electricity, Study Says
The Huffington Post Joanna Zelman First Posted: 04/14/11 08:58 AM ET Updated: 04/14/11 09:13 AM


Pot-smoking environmentalists take note: Grass might not be green. A new study reveals that indoor marijuana production carries a shockingly large carbon footprint.

GOOD reports that Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory researcher Evan Mills, Ph.D., has released a surprising new independent report, “Energy up in Smoke: The Carbon Footprint of Indoor Cannabis Production.” Mills reports that indoor Cannabis production uses 1% of the nation’s entire electricity consumption. This comes to energy expenditures of $5 billion per year.

While 1% may not seem like a lot, the report claims that smoking one single Cannabis joint is equivalent to running a 100-watt light bulb for 17 hours. That Cannabis cigarette carries two pounds of CO2 emissions.

According to the report:

Each four-by-four-foot 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. Processed Cannabis results in 3000-times its weight in emissions. For off-grid production, it requires 70 gallons of diesel fuel to produce one indoor Cannabis plant, or 140 gallons with smaller, less-efficient gasoline generators.
Is this report ideal material for anti-drug activists? Not exactly. Mills is clear to write, “This study does not pass judgement on the merits of Cannabis cultivation” and he states that cannabis production is not intrinsically polluting, but rather currently engages in inefficient production. Mills proposes that energy use for indoor production could be dramatically reduced, with cost-effective efficiency improvements of up to 75%. He also suggests that by shifting cultivation use outdoors, certain aspects of energy consumption would be eliminated (although other environmental impacts might be imposed instead).

Fast Company finds this report to be further evidence that marijuana should be legalized. Writer Ariel Schwartz says, “Marijuana production needs to be legalized, so people will actually cast a critical eye on its energy usage. All the industry has to do is follow in the footsteps of the commercial agricultural industry, which has made strides in energy efficiency in recent years.”

Mills writes in his report that criminalization contributes to inefficient energy practices. Compared to electric grids, off-grid power production often produced more greenhouse-gas emissions. He also describes how long driving distances and odor suppression measures take away from ventilation efficiencies.

Ultimately, Mills concludes, “It is up to others to decide how to respond to the findings.” Whatever the response may be, indoor cannabis production must somehow reduce its carbon footprint.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/04/14/marijuana-production-carbon-footprint-environment_n_848865.html

orange
04-15-2011, 05:33 PM
Full report here: http://evan-mills.com/energy-associates/Indoor.html

ClevelandBronco
04-15-2011, 05:38 PM
It's the damn black lights in the offices.

alnorth
04-15-2011, 05:41 PM
Well, for those who are hugely concerned about energy use and/or global warming for some reason, I imagine people would be more likely to use sunlight if they didn't think they had to hide it. So, its not really honest to say its not green. More like the ban is not green.

Brock
04-15-2011, 05:44 PM
Well, for those who are hugely concerned about energy use and/or global warming for some reason, I imagine people would be more likely to use sunlight if they didn't think they had to hide it. So, its not really honest to say its not green. More like the ban is not green.

No shit. I'd grow it on my rooftop if these bitches would leave me alone.

Jaric
04-15-2011, 10:12 PM
If only this plant would grow outside in the sunshine! IF ONLY!!!!

Pitt Gorilla
04-15-2011, 10:14 PM
If only this plant would grow outside in the sunshine! IF ONLY!!!!Eh, you know how finicky weeds are.

KC native
04-16-2011, 12:23 AM
Bored at a dive bar so posting here so hopefully I remember to come back to this thread. I'm interested in tis report because a lot of new lights are finally hitting technical feasbilty (sulphur plasma and LED) that dramatically reduce energy use.

Also, outdoor weed sucks. Low smell, highr possibilty of seeds, and lower potency are the chief reasons. It's all about the indooooooo aka indoor.

KC native
04-16-2011, 12:24 AM
Eh, you know how finicky weeds are.

You have no idea how true this is for high quality weed.

KC native
04-16-2011, 01:22 PM
Ok, so looking at this I'm thinking it's overstated quite a bit. He assumes that everyone is running a 600 watt Metal Halide and a 1000 watt High Pressure Sodium, air conditioning, CO2 supplementation (only worth it on larger grows with sealed rooms), reservoir heater (almost no one uses these, maybe chillers but not heaters), heating during lights off (only necessary where it's cold), and a dehumidifier (very rarely needed).

It's a good report but again, I think it maybe be overstated by about 25%-40%. First, not everyone is running a 4x4 space and if they are it is unlikely that there are 10 of them in one room (don't believe me? then check out the multiple forums dedicated to growing). The HID lamps would be scorching in there. It would be a horribly designed grow room.

Second, the dehumidifier. He assumes everyone runs one. This is absurd. They are expensive and use a fuck ton of electricity. They are the exception not the rule.

Third, many medical growers use smaller lights and smaller gardens.

Fourth, he does ignore emerging technologies such as LED and sulphur plasma lights. I can't blame him for that as LED's are still way to expensive for commercial grows and sulphur plasmas as still too high for wide spread adoption (and they just added a bulb that allows them to be a full cycle light).

Overall, he takes a very clandestine industry and writes a fairly good report about it. I just think it is overstated.