50,000 California Pot Farms Are Leaving California Rivers Dry
With each marijuana plant using 6 gallons of water per day and these farms illegally diverting water, local streams and rivers are running dry according to report published inÂ Scientific American,
[A]n estimated 50,000 small pot farms. In the last decade, under the auspices of Proposition 215, which legalized marijuana for medical use, there has been a steady increase in the amount of cannabis cultivation in Shasta, Tehama and Humboldt counties, according to DeWayne Little, a lieutenant with CDFW’s Watershed Enforcement Team.
A study by CDFW and published in the journalÂ PLOS ONEÂ in March, found that in four watersheds that are home to both coho salmon and large numbers of marijuana farmsâ€”which use about 22 liters of water per day, per plantâ€”the pot cultivation drained much of the river’s water (E&ENews PM, March 25)
Illegal water diversions, as well as increased sedimentation and pesticide use, are the main environmental impacts from marijuana grow operations, according to Little.
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