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CT cannabis businesses are not subject to environmental regulations despite heavy power and water use

CT cannabis businesses are not subject to environmental regulations despite heavy power and water use

As Connecticut prepares to launch its recreational cannabis program, the departments that regulate Connecticut’s cannabis producers and manage their licensing have little state-level regulation in regard to sustainability.

Kaitlyn Krasselt, spokesperson for the state Department of Consumer Protection, stated that there is nothing in the policies or procedures of the Department of Consumer Protection that specifically addresses sustainability.

Krasselt stated that regulations relating to the environment usually fall under the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

Will Healey, spokesperson for DEEP, stated that pesticide use is regulated by DEEP regardless of crop.

Healey explained in an email that because cannabis other than hemp has not been made federally legal, the EPA has not approved any pesticides intended for use on marijuana. Only a few pesticides have been approved for hemp use. Otherwise, Connecticut growers should follow the DEEP website’s guidance.

Healey stated that cannabis permits are up to the Department of Consumer Protection.

The environmental regulatory agency in most states that have legalized marijuana is separate from the one that manages the cannabis businesses. This can lead, according to a report, to oversights of environmental concerns up until the licenses are granted. ReportTriumvirate Environmental, a waste management company.

Connecticut’s cannabis companies often have their own priorities. They also have plans to encourage sustainable business practices. This is especially true for cultivators. Experts and industry reports agree that cannabis production requires large amounts electricity and water.

Matte Namer is the founder and chief executive of Cannabeta Realty. This real estate company focuses on cannabis. I hope there will be mitigation.

Namer said that it is especially difficult in the Northeast, where cannabis needs to be grown inside.

Connecticut plans to open next month the first application window for companies involved in the recreational programs. Experts say environmental sustainability is a topic of increasing interest in the industry.

Our members make it a priority to reduce their carbon footprint where possible while conducting their businesses in an environmentally-friendly manner through smart growing, manufacturing and packaging, said Linda Kowalski, executive director of the Connecticut Medical Cannabis Council.

The four cultivation facilities of each state make up the council.

Thom Brodeur is chief executive officer at N2 Packaging Systems. He said that while some of that growth is due to the industry’s growth, others are driven by consumers’ desire for sustainable products. According to the company’s website, it creates packaging that is more sustainable and preserves cannabis products for longer periods of time.

Brodeur stated, “I think there’s a deep desire by consumers, especially I think this is more generational.” Younger generations, including millennials, are more concerned about the environment than those older.

He believes that the industry will continue to grow in focus.

Only Curaleaf, one of Connecticut’s four cultivation facilities, responded to a request.

Raheem Uqdah is Curaleaf’s director of corporate social responsibility. He stated in a statement that sustainability was a key pillar of the company’s Rooted In Good Corporate Responsibil Initiative. The firm established a task force on carbon reduction in 2021 and partnered with a green technology start-up to examine their carbon footprint.

Uqdahs statement stated that their next steps will be to create a carbon neutrality plan and recycling action plan.

Uqdahs statement stated that the long-term goals include a commitment towards achieving their carbon footprint goal by 2025 to 2030, additional recycling initiatives and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification.

Uqdahs statement stated that we hope to do our bit for the planet by working towards carbon neutrality, greater transparency and making better decisions about our ongoing interactions and with earth systems, resource allocation, and supplier diversity initiatives. We also established a set of recommendations for best practices in environmental sustainability.

The National Cannabis Industry Association published a publication in October 2020. ReportThe industry’s environmental sustainability, which included 10 key takeaways.

These include best practice policies like reusable packaging, tracking environmental metrics, optimizing resource use, and policies that support sustainability.

Dr. Kevin Sabet (president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana) said in a statement that legislation is needed to encourage growers to adhere to stricter environmental regulations. Sabet was also a critic for the industry and author of Smokescreen.

Sabet stated in the statement that taxing excessive energy consumption is one option.

Sabet stated that Marijuana cultivation is well-known for its inability to sustain itself. Marijuana is a very thirsty plant, and requires a lot of water to grow.

Joseph Gresko (D-Stratford), co-chair of Environment Committee, stated that the issue was not one that the committee had yet considered. According to Gresko, the industry’s smaller growers have many ways to promote sustainability.

He said that sustainability will be a topic that we will eventually discuss as we go through the various fits and starts.

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