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Salinas Valley

Ecological tolls of growing cannabis —both legal and illegal

cannabisA big multi-agency "reclamation" effort on national forest lands in the Emerald Triangle points again to the serious environmental impacts of outlaw cannabis cultivation. Will this be the last gasp of this sort of thing now that California has legalized? Or will outlaw operations continue, with growers reluctant to enter the legal sector? This debate often overlooks the obvious reality that legal crops also take an ecological toll. Seawater intrusion due to years of breakneck well-drilling now threatens some of California's best farmland. With state ag-biz planning to massively convert from broccoli and cauliflower to cannabis, this is also an issue for the legal industry in the years ahead.

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