Marijuana industry uses $6 billion in energy last year

Capelli D'Angelo

These indoor cannabis plants were trained to grow flat in order to take better advantage of the grow lights and increase yields. (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)
These indoor cannabis plants were trained to grow flat in order to take better advantage of the grow lights and increase yields. (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

As legal marijuana spreads, many are concerned about crime statistics and dollar figures, but energy use is often overlooked. According to Westword, the U.S. marijuana industry used over $6 billion in energy last year.

The report was written by the cannabis industry data provider and showed this use was about one percent of the energy used by the entire country. Specialists predict this number will grow as marijuana markets are implemented in more states.

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“Companies that adopt the most energy efficient practices will have an important cost advantage as the industry becomes more competitive and prices fall, and states that prioritize energy efficiency will reduce the fast-growing industry’s impact on the grid and on the environment,” said Giadha Aguirre De Carcer, founder of New Frontier.

Although outdoor grows are possible in certain areas of the country, some state regulations limit this option. In Denver alone, there are 371 licensed grow facilities, even though the light cycle and weather in this state are perfect for annual harvesting outdoors.

At an indoor grow, electricity is used to run the grow lights, whether they are LED, HPS or CFL, the ventilation system and the dehumidifier. None of which are needed to successfully grow outside.

As more companies are forced to move their operations inside, the energy use statistic will continue to grow. To learn more about this issue, check out the full story.

Collegian Green Report Blogger Capelli D’Angelo can be reached online at blogs@collegian.com.