Good news! Climate change could make weed more potent
This changes everything.
The Daily Climate is reporting that rising levels of carbon in the atmosphere could lead to an increase in the potency of marijuana, citing research by Lewis Ziska, plant physiologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service. Ziska explains that because plants evolved thousands of years ago in an atmosphere with much higher levels of carbon than today, it’s possible that the increasing carbon in the air will actually be a boon for plants, including everyone’s favorite gateway to Cheetos and sweatpants: WEED!
The Daily Climate’s Dan Sullivan writes:
Ziska’s research suggests plants feeling deprived will benefit from rising CO2 levels because they haven’t yet adapted to the lower levels. His own and other scientists’ work indicates the medicinal qualities of these plants may be bolstered by global warming.
By “medicinal qualities,” we can only assume they mean “the shit that gets you high,” proving once and for all that there is a silver lining to everything, even looming climate apocalypse.
But before you decide to leave your car running all day to boost those carbon levels even more, put down the bong and consider this: Marijuana, like most living things, requires water to grow, and water is becoming a scare commodity over here on planet Earth. Sullivan writes that a 2014 study of thee Northern California pot farming counties:
estimated growers used nearly 63,000 gallons of water a day to irrigate 10,500 outdoor marijuana plants. That’s 9.5 million gallons per growing season out of one watershed. Depending on the creek monitored, that level of use amounts to between 21 and 29 percent of minimum stream flow, the amount of water necessary to preserve stream values including fish and wildlife habitat, aquatic life, water quality and aesthetic beauty.
In other words, all that kush might be genocide for our watershed. On the bright side, at least the extra kick in your Grand Daddy Purple Urkle will help dull the pain.