The New York Times put out a story today on the environmental damage caused by marijuana growers. In it, Gary Graham Hughes of EPIC says, “There is an identity crisis going on right now…The people who are really involved with [the marijuana] industry are trying to understand what their responsibilities are.”
The article looks into many marijuana growing issues that have been covered locally—rodenticide, erosion, and water diversion. Interestingly though the piece leans heavily on the problems associated with marijuana growing, it does end with the idea that the industry has “begun to police itself.” The conclusion notes the Best Management Practices manual and the program that works with people to install water storage.
According to the Times, law enforcement isn’t hasn’t been very effective against the worst offenders. The article states,
Federal environmental agents, including Mr. Roy and Mr. Job, have brought two cases to the United States attorney’s office in San Francisco. The office declined to prosecute a case last year, they said. A new one is under review. But, they said, manpower for enforcement is limited.
With articles like this though happening more frequently, will the increasing notice the wider world is taking of the environmental impacts of growing marijuana cause the government to take more notice also?