The marijuana industry is booming in New York City, but it’s not just the people who are happy. There are concerns about the environmental impact of this burgeoning industry, which has seen an increase in greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption.

The environmental policy is the most important issue that needs to be addressed by New York’s pot leaders.

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While the cost of emissions varies by state, the most important element, according to experts, is regional variation in climate and temperature, which leads facilities to need varying degrees of climate management.

For example, humidity control at an indoor grow facility in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, takes four times as much energy as in a facility in Long Beach, California. The pollution’s contents – carbon dioxide and other gaseous compounds – will add to global temperature rises and exacerbate climatic conditions.

Leaders in New York’s marijuana sector can help the earth by making lower-impact technologies like solar-powered HVAC systems more accessible to growers and processors. Subsidies for equipment, greater money for technical development, and a thorough environmental evaluation procedure will all be required.

Metzger seems to be a promising contender for embodying these values. She stated her desire to create a “environmentally sustainable, fair, and accountable” marijuana market for New Yorkers in a statement.

Metzger’s CV demonstrates that she has the necessary skills to achieve these objectives. She has really worked on marijuana legislation before. She drafted and supported the framework for New York’s hemp legislation, which went into effect in 2018. She identifies as an environmentalist and has gotten support from the Sierra Club and other environmental organizations throughout her campaign.

The other nominees’ climate scorecards aren’t as impressive.

Wright focused on issues related to aging, families, transportation, cities, and banking throughout her tenure in the Assembly. She was one of several lawmakers who backed New York’s version of the Green New Deal, as well as one of three who backed a bill to establish a permanent environmental justice advisory board.

The theme of social justice runs across Alexander’s career. In 2017, he wrote a post for HuffPost in reaction to the police shooting of Philando Castile, a Black man who was murdered because his claimed marijuana smell deemed him a danger to public safety. “We need to legalize marijuana because prohibition has been inefficient, expensive, and racially enforced,” Alexander wrote. But, more significantly, it is past time for us to state unequivocally that marijuana cannot be used as an excuse for police brutality or murder.” While his résumé demonstrates a consistent support for the Democratic Party program, we cannot assume that his social justice views would encompass environmental justice.

  • environmental degradation
  • environmental impact statement
  • environmental protection
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