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Summary and opinion by Wendy Anderson.
With the high demand on the cannabis industry also comes very high energy consumption (it's why many growers use LED grow lights). They need 24 hour lighting cycles, air conditioning, and ventilation systems for many growing sites around the U.S.
According to a study done by scientist Eric Mills, with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, legalized indoor cannabis accounts for 1% of total electricity used in the United States. Which costs $6 billion dollars per year. This kind of consumption produces 15 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions an amount equal to three million cars.
States are slowly coming around and are in learning stages as to how to be more energy efficient. Examples such as, Oregon and Washington offering cash incentives for using energy efficient lighting are helping, but it’s still an issue.
Growing outside would be the ultimate option if people could hone those farming skills and work around the weather changes. Many have just learned how to grow indoors because of prohibition so they don’t know how to grow outdoors and need to develop the skills of growing outside. It is also much less expensive for the growers to be able to grow their crops in natural environment. If you compare the difference it goes from $400-$500 per pound to grow indoors and $50 per pound to grow outdoors.
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