Climate change replaces law enforcement as California’s biggest threat to cannabis
Four million acres have burned in California wildfires so far, shattering records from previous years. Those fires, which experts say are spurred by climate change, now constitute the biggest threat to the legal marijuana industry.
It’s not just the threat of burning crops. Cannabis grown many miles away from the fires could be tainted by smoke and ash. Smoke has covered sunshine and led to plant death. For plants that survive, contamination is a potential issue.
“Not long before marijuana became legal, the biggest threat to growing cannabis outdoors was the law,” writes Evelyn Nieves at Inside Climate News. “Now it's a constellation of climate change-fueled weather disasters: drought, record heat and fires so big they take weeks and thousands of firefighters to extinguish.”
Cannabis cultivators don’t have as many options available to them as traditional businesses when their property is threatened or destroyed. But there are options, including disaster relief from the California Department of Food and Agriculture. You can learn more about that here.