It sure would release a lot more smoke! I can not see it having a huge impact on the environment however. It would have a smaller impact than tobacco, and there is not a lot of lobbying to ban tobacco because of its environmental effects.
I would not foresee the environment being damaged by marijuana being made legal. Marijuana is legalized in the Netherlands, and there is no indication that their local environment has been harmed because of it.
There is no evidence that shows growing marijuana crops negatively affecting the soil and surrounding natural environment. It is a plant, and the growth of most any plant is actually beneficial for the environment (absorbs carbon dioxide, and produces oxygen).
The major disputes surrounding marijuana are typically based on societal views, and economic impacts.
Some say the legalization would have a positive impact on the environment. Right now, growers feel compelled to raise their crops on hidden, often forested lands, establishing irrigation systems to remote areas and thereby harming wilderness ecosystems. Illegal growers also evade the environmental regulations that restrict legal crop growers, which can disrupt the environmental balance even more. If farmers could grow marijuana legally, it would supposedly be on more suitable agricultural land and could be better regulated for pesticide and water use.
Legalizing marijuana would not have a negative impact on the environment. If anything, it would promote the production of plants which would help provide more oxygen for the environment and trap more carbon. I don’t think it is a legitimate concern for people to be worried about the environmental implications of legalizing marijuana. Some people are worried about the social and political implications though.
I think it would help the environment instead, actually. I agree with the above answers declaring that there is a lot of reckless practices of growing marijuana -leaving pesticides and other wastes – because they are forced to grow in hidden areas that are not suitable for agriculture. Growers are afraid of the legal consequences they may face if they get caught. If marijuana is made legal, growers won’t have to use hidden areas and instead abide to rules that legal medicinal growers follow.
In addition to all the great answers above, legalizing marijuana would allow marijuana users to grow their own plants. This would promote a more localized source, cutting down the environmental impacts of transporting marijuana.
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