The cannabis industry has seen a massive boom over the course of the past several years, but many have questioned the ecological impact of such a fast-paced industry. The marijuana industry has also been able to produce incredibly large businesses with massive amounts of potential for the future, but growth strategies are quickly being questioned as to how eco-friendly their businesses are.
A new study has found that some companies in the cannabis industry are underperforming as far as water and energy use is concerned. Doug Morrow, the director of thematic research as Sustainalytics, stated that “there’s a bit of a disconnect between investors enthusiasm and what’s going on on the ground. The big four cannabis companies show quite a stunning lack of disclosure on a lot of these issues.” The company has been working to secure some of this eco-data for some time now, but has found that the companies do not fare well on their scale of sustainability. Morrow continued to state that the environmental health factors will soon become a large part of the industry as the market counties to grow. There is no way that an industry based on the growth of plants, cannot take into consideration its effect on the greater ecosystem.
Many have stated that the large companies within the cannabis industry should begin to disclose this data to the public so that individuals can see which company is the most-eco friendly, and be able to choose based on that principle if they would like. A company known as Eco Firma, based out of Oregon, is the first truly sustainable cannabis producer. By utilizing LED grow lights and solar power, the company has managed to make their cannabis operations completely carbon-neutral. This is quite an amazing feat considering all of the moving parts that come into growing cannabis and producing other components of the industry. The company also uses a new technology that makes sure none of their waste products are able to make their way into the runoff for plant feeding or into sewage systems. The owner of the company stated recently that “honestly, it wasn’t some grand plan. I just assumed I would not be allowed to just let my runoff go anywhere. I thought I had to address it, so we designed the facility to do that. Turns out, it was never a requirement. We did it anyway because it seemed like the right thing to do. It really wasn’t very expensive, all things considered, but it does require one to be in agricultural land and have the space to do it – not very easy in the city.”
Companies in the cannabis industry have a large amount of potential to benefit from the use of these new and green technologies. Not only do they have the ability to help grow better cannabis, but it can also end up saving the producer a large amount of money in the long run. This means better prices for the consumer and better profits for the producer of the cannabis plant. The marijuana industry still is very new all things considered, which means that issues like this are still going to come up and need to be dealt with. The hopes are high that over the course of the next few years, companies will be required to make their products in the most green and eco-friendly ways possible. Only time will tell how smaller eco-friendly companies, in turn, impact the larger cannabis eco-system as we move throughout the near future.