Apparently the newest big boosters of solar technology are illegal pot farmers. Officials in both New Mexico and California have seen an increased use of solar technology in several recently busted grow sites. The solar panels are generally used to run water pumps that are crucial in marijuana cultivation.
Now, everyone knows anyone associated with pot is into Earth-loving grooviness. And this might be part of why pot growers love solar panels, but it’s likely that their popularity stems less from love of Mother Earth than from fear of getting caught. One of the ways that officials are alerted to the presence of a crop is excessive power bills. Solar panels are cheaper, ergo they create less suspicion.
Sadly, when solar is outlawed, only outlaws will … wait, let me start again. When outlaws use solar, they will not think twice about fucking stealing your solar panels right out from under you. According to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle, Honig Wineries in Rutherford, Calif., recently found itself relieved of 40 solar panels, worth about $17,o00 each. Officials caught the men responsible for the theft, and have reason to believe they were being stolen for use in marijuana cultivation. Which is like, so not groovy.
Get Grist in your inbox