Hemp Can Be Crucial To Control Climate Change And It's Destined To Be Wildly Profitable, Win-Win?
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A team of scientists from Hudson Carbon, a research center in upstate New York that studies carbon storage, says cannabis may be the missing player in humanity's fight against climate change. As? Hemp absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere more than twice as effectively as trees.
Although the US accounts for only about 5 percent of the world's population, it is responsible for 28 percent of global CO2 emissions, so we should pay attention to that.
“Roughly speaking, if [the US] grew 50 million acres of hemp, we would be sequestering a few hundred million tons of carbon a year in that acreage,” said Ben Dobson, founder and president of Hudson Carbon.
Dobson is considered a pioneer in the field of carbon farming. His farm in New York's Hudson Valley is a soil laboratory where researchers found that trees can absorb about six tons of CO2 per year, but hemp up to 16 tons. CO2 is also permanently trapped in hemp fiber, which can be used as a raw material to manufacture a variety of products ranging from textiles and building materials to car parts and medicines.
Looking at cotton alone, which accounts for 43% of all fiber used in clothing and textiles worldwide, given the vast difference in the water required to grow hemp versus cotton, hemp can offer tremendous benefits.
Hemp, or industrial hemp, is a subspecies of the cannabis plant, but it lacks most of marijuana's psychoactive compound, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
The fastest growing plant in the world
Another advantage of hemp is the fact that it is one of the fastest growing plants in the world, reaching a height of four meters in just 100 days.
Not only can cannabis plants purify the air of greenhouse gases, but they can also absorb carcinogenic heavy metals from the soil, such as mercury, lead, or cadmium—elements that, while suitable for food, are very dangerous for people who consume these plants.
And hemp is destined to be extremely profitable
Industry revenue is expected to triple over the next 7 years, growing from $4.71 billion in 2019 to $15.26 billion in 2027.
The work Dobson is now doing could result in farmers being paid for their practices and their ability to sequester carbon.
After all, according to Dobson, farmers are collectively responsible for 60% of the earth's surface and how it is treated.
"We really manage and manage over half the surface of the earth," he said. "We must regenerate this surface of the earth into a healthy ecosystem to ensure a future for our children and mitigate the worst effects of climate change."
One wonders... what are we waiting for?
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