The legalization of cannabis — and the rapidly-expanding industry that sprung from it — has reared an ugly beast that has power companies worried across Colorado and up and down the west coast, Marijuana Business Daily reports.
Energy consumption is becoming more and more of an issue for legal cannabis businesses. In many cases, harsh zoning laws or cannabis-specific legislation has forced professional grow operations indoors, which — while helpful for establishing a safe, clean cultivation environment — really spikes up the cost of production in energy bills. In fact, reports from a National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners panel held in Austin, Texas last month indicates that the U.S. cannabis industry’s energy bill may soon spike upwards of $11 billion.
There are efforts to move the legal industry towards greener grow methods through greenhouse technologies and more eco-friendly power sources such as solar power, however for certain cases — such as the industrial warehouses full of cannabis currently found in Denver — potential solutions are not nearly so numerous.
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