5. Stay Up-To-Date on Lighting
In order to grow weed in the indoor facilities where it can be controlled best, farmers must use artificial light. That light, powered by electricity, increases the farm’s need for energy and slices into their budget and profits.
Keeping an eye on the electricity needed to run these extensive indoor lighting systems that use UV and LED sources costs a pretty penny.
Colorado Harvest Company’s Flower Room admitted they faced an average $12,000 monthly electricity bill. This bill is only for their 10,000-square-foot indoor facility. Across the board, electricity can account for nearly 20 percent of the costs of running a grow operation.
More than a cost to the farmer, grow ops take a toll on the environment. Overuse of electricity adds to the total carbon footprint. In 2014, Denver claimed to have 362 indoor growing operations.
Those facilities consumed more than 2 percent of the entire city’s electricity usage.
To stay cost-efficient and energy-friendly, industrial farms must constantly ensure they use the most up-to-date lighting technologies. But they must also be careful of new technologies using more electricity than the lights already being used.
Many farmers use high pressure sodium (HPS) lights. Still, innovations continue to make their way to the market.
None so much recently as the LED lights. But if a farm truly wants to practice the ways to make the cannabis industry more sustainable, they must be vigilant at keeping up-to-date on the most modern, efficient lighting for their crops.
Doing so will help save the owner money and the environment from eventual collapse.
Final Hit: 5 Ways To Make The Cannabis Industry More Sustainable
In the end, the best of the ways to make the cannabis industry more sustainable would be to legalize the plant on a federal level.
Once it is no longer a Schedule 1 drug, public lands will not be utilized to farm the plant in secret, keeping the process underground where it is illegal. Federal forces can control and regulate the standards for the use and disposal of toxic substances.
Finally, with production out in the open, farmers will be free to engage in their agricultural enterprise. They may use outdoor fields or greenhouses which both rely more on natural light.
No longer will they have to use artificial light in secret indoor grow facilities. No more will they have to use off-grid electricity from diesel or propane.
Cannabis farming would no longer be in the dark. In fact, it could happen for all to see. And finally for all to enjoy. But hopefully without harming the world in which we live any more than they have to.