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Jeremy Brooks

With 20-some states already on the legal-cannabis train, no wonder Hawaii wants to join in. Except that instead of its more popular cousin, marijuana, whom EVERYBODY wants to sit next to at lunch, Hawaii is in the process of legalizing hemp. (Unfortunately, if you put THAT in your pipe and smoke it, you’ll be sorely disappointed.)

But wait! Hemp has a great personality, honest! It may be low in THC, but the plants are great for sucking up metals, pesticides, and even crude oil, keeping them out of the soil — and thus the food and water supply. So says a bill that just passed Hawaii’s House of Representatives and is on its way to the state Senate:

[T]he State’s extensive agricultural operations in the past have left toxins in vast tracts of land. Phytoremediation will remove those toxins …

[H]emp is a superior phytoremediator because it grows quickly and can extract toxins without the need to remove any of the contaminated topsoil. Other factors that make hemp a superior phytoremediator are its ability to grow unaffected by the toxins it accumulates, its fast rate of absorption, and its ability to bind compound contaminants from the air and the soil.

The bill also authorizes researchers at the University of Hawaii to start a hemp biofuel pilot program. As the state currently has to import gobs of coal and oil, hemp could help reduce Hawaii’s reliance on dirty fuel (which currently supplies almost 90 percent of its electricity).

Sounds pretty dope to us. Just one question, though: What are we supposed to put in our brownies?