Medical pot farms causing harm to Californian streams

Medical pot farms causing harm to Californian streams

California's fish & wildlife officials are concerned that the state's coastal forests are being increasingly polluted and sucked dry by water-gulping medical marijuana pot farms.

The state's medical pot law allows people to grow marijuana, for personal medical purposes. But, officials argue that many people in northern counties are growing marijuana for sale, and not for personal use.

Increasing demand for the drug has encouraged many people to pursue larger-scale pot farming, particularly in remote areas of Lake, Mendocino and Humboldt counties on the densely forested North Coast.

Denise Rushing, Lake County supervisor, said that fertilizers are being mixed into watersheds, which is polluting the rivers and hurts fish industry and other wildlife.

Supporting an ordinance banning outdoor grows, the official said, "People are coming in, denuding the hillsides, damming the creeks and mixing in fertilizers that are not allowed in the U. S. into our watersheds. When rains come, it flows downstream into the lake and our water supply."

Many of the affected waterways in Northern California contain endangered marine species, such as salmon and steelhead. In addition, streams are running dry due to over use of water by medical marijuana farms.

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