Legal cannabis: environmental disaster?

Posted on November 19th, 2012 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , , .

earthWe have noted before that the cannabis industry has a huge carbon footprint—something of a dirty little secret for the legalization movement. This is an especially relevant fact in Colorado, where Amendment 64 specifies that all legal weed must be grown indoors. Roberta Ragni in the Italian eco-journal GreenMe, asks "Marijuana Legalization: What Will It Mean for the Environment?" After quoting triumphant pot activists, Ragni lays on the inconvenient truth:

Colorado cops leery of legalization

Posted on November 17th, 2012 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , .

ColoradoThe Fiscal Times is enthused by the emergence of "Pot-economics" and the "The Birth of the Legal Weed Industry" in Colorado after Amendment 64. But PBS News Hour emphasizes that "State Is Anxious Over US Government's Reaction" after the Colorado vote. Note the quote from Jerry Peters of Denver's North Metro Drug Task Force:

Washington: cannabis cases dropped ahead of legalization

Posted on November 16th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisProsecutors in Washington's King and Pierce counties are dismissing more than 220 misdemeanor marijuana cases in response to last week's vote to legalize small quantities of cannabis. In King County, 175 cases have been dismissed involving possession of one ounce or less. I-502 makes one ounce legal on Dec. 6, but King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg decided to apply I-502 retroactively.  "Although the effective date of I-502 is not until December 6, there is no point in continuing to seek criminal penalties for conduct that will be legal next month," Satterberg said in a statement.

Colorado legalization law portends corporate cannabis?

Posted on November 14th, 2012 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , .

ColoradoWith Colorado hoping to harvest revenue from taxes and licensing fees on newly legal cannabis, the herbal enthusiasts who fought for Amendment 64 may find their fantasies of free—or at least cheap—weed dashed by the state's new marijuana order. National Public Radio on Nov. 13 features an interview with reporter Tony Dokoupil, author of a Newsweek cover story, "The New Pot Barons." He notes the restrictive system already in place for medical marijuana in the Centennial State, and warns:

Canada toughens cannabis laws

Posted on November 9th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , .

CanadaThe same day that voters in Colorado and Washington state approved the legalization of cannabis, the Stephen Harper government in Ottawa brought into force tough new mandatory penalties for marijuana offenses. The measures are part of the Conservative administration's Bill C-10, the Safe Streets and Communities Act, passed by parliament in March. The new law provides a mandatory six-month term for growing as few as six cannabis plants—twice the mandatory minimum for child molestation, critics point out.

Electoral advances for cannabis —but legal battles loom

United StatesCannabis is set to become legal in Colorado and Washington after voters passed historic ballot initiatives on Nov. 6. In Washington voters approved Initiative 502, allowing possession and distribution of cannabis through a state licensing system of growers, processors and stores, where adults will be able to buy up to an ounce of dried cannabis; up to a pound of a cannabis-infused product, such as brownies; or up to 72 ounces of cannabis-infused liquids.. The Colorado initiative actually introduces Amendment 64 to the state constitution, allowing adults over 21 to possess up to an ounce and to privately grow up to six plants—although public use will be banned. In Oregon, the similar Cannabis Tax Act Initiative or Measure 80, failed by approximately 55-to-45% of the vote.

Iran: drug war execution spree

Posted on October 25th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

Middle EastIran hanged ten men convicted of drug trafficking Oct. 22, defying pleas from the United Nations, European Union and human rights groups. EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said she was "appalled" by the  hangings, which add "to the alarming execution rate in Iran"—now at over 300 since the beginning of the year. "Most of the executions took place after summary trials, without the right to appeal and for offenses which according to international minimum standards should not result in capital punishment," she added. "I call on Iran, once more, to halt pending executions and to introduce a moratorium on the death penalty." The 10 men, who were hanged at a Tehran prison, were members of two drug smuggling gangs, according to Iran's judiciary. One of the men, Saeed Sedeghi, was a shop worker who Amnesty International believes was tortured and subjected to mock execution while serving in time in Tehran's notorious Evin Prison.

Unanimous landmark decision in San Diego dispensary case

Posted on October 24th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisCalifornia's Fourth District Court of Appeal for California issued a unanimous ruling Oct. 24 in a landmark medical marijuana case that reverses the conviction of San Diego dispensary operator Jovan Jackson, convicted in September 2010 after being denied a defense in state court. The Fourth District ruling also reversed the lower court's finding that Jackson was not entitled to a defense, providing the elements for such a defense in future jury trials.

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