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420, Meet Earth Day: The Secret Carbon Toll of Indoor Bud

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The Drug War doesn't force marijuana farmers into the shadows. Increasingly, it forces them inside, to grow under high-wattage lamps.

Lighting up all that indoor bud takes a massive amount of electiricty. Indoor marijuana cultivation accounts for 2 percent of U.S. household energy use, according to a new report by an energy analyst at Lawrence Berkeley National Labs. In California, the toll is even higher — 8 percent.

Consider this the next time you light up: The energy input that goes into growing a single joint of indoor weed is the equivalent of leaving a standard 100 watt bulb on for 17 hours straight. The yearly CO2 output of indoor cannabis cultivation nationwide, 17 million tons, is equal to the emissions of 3 million cars.

Are you listening lawmakers, pot growers, smokers everwhere?

It's time to let marijuana out of the closet. Stick it where the sun shines. It's Earth Day, people.

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