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Marijuana Growing Gobbles Electricity, Study Finds

mcwow

New Member
From The New York Times

Don't bogart that megawatt, my friend.

A new study estimates that indoor pot-growing operations in the United States burn about $5 billion worth of electricity annually, or roughly 1 percent of national power consumption. That's enough electricity to power two million average homes.

The electricity use of the typical grow operation approaches 200 watts per square foot, on par with the power usage of a modern computer data center, Evan Mills, a staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and author of the study, said in a statement. (The study was completed in his free time and without federal funds, Dr. Mills added.)

The study estimated that a single joint contains the equivalent of roughly two pounds of carbon dioxide emissions, the equivalent of running a 100-watt bulb for about 30 hours on the California grid.

Marijuana is considered the nation's largest cash crop, with a production value estimated at about $40 billion annually. Legal restrictions have been steadily relaxed in recent years, with cultivation for medical purposes legal in 17 states.

Yet a continuing federal prohibition on virtually all forms of pot-growing has kept the industry in the shadows, contributing to substantial inefficiencies, Dr. Mills said.

"If improved practices applicable to commercial agricultural greenhouses are any indication, such large amounts of energy are not required for indoor cannabis production," he wrote. "Cost-effective efficiency improvements of 75 percent are conceivable."

Such energy savings could be substantial. In California, where about 400,000 people are licensed to grow marijuana for personal medical use or to sell to dispensaries, indoor cultivation is responsible for a whopping 8 percent of household electricity usage, costing about $3 billion yearly and producing the annual carbon emission of a million average cars.

"Current indoor cannabis production and distribution practices result in prodigious energy use, costs, and greenhouse-gas pollution," Dr. Mills wrote. "The hidden growth of electricity demand in this sector confounds energy forecasts and obscures savings from energy efficiency programs and policies."

However, Dr. Mills also noted that California's cleaner mix of fuels for power generation meant that the state, despite its position as the country's top marijuana producer, contributed only about 20 percent of national carbon dioxide emissions from the practice.
 

fish cake

Member of the Month: Nov 2012
When it becomes more feasible for growers to take to the great outdoors freely without fear of legal ramifications for growing or protecting their crop, I imagine this will change.

THATS RIGHT! also there would be much saving in law inforcement ;gas inthe cop cars,payroll and many other things that would offset even that1% of enegy wasted although I dont think its a waste. A waste is the gov worrying about this and not all the other things that are wasting $$$. happy 420:peace2:
 

AcexofxHaze

New Member
THATS RIGHT! also there would be much saving in law inforcement ;gas inthe cop cars,payroll and many other things that would offset even that1% of enegy wasted although I dont think its a waste. A waste is the gov worrying about this and not all the other things that are wasting $$$. happy 420:peace2:

All so true my friend Happy 420!:thumb::lot-o-toke::cool027:
 

mandsgrow

New Member
The electrical grid in the united states loses alot more energy than what the growers use, just because most of the grid is old technology. I say as long as we are paying our bills then wtf are they trying to pin on us?
 

mandsgrow

New Member
All so true my friend Happy 420!:thumb::lot-o-toke::cool027:

:thumb: they need to take all the money they are using to try and shut us down and use some funds to help out our homeless situation. get more peeps off the streets some grub to eats!
 

bayguy

New Member
Have you seen a powerplant at night? They are lit up like christmas trees, maybe they should look into conserving their own electricity first..
 

Icemud

Member of the Month: July 2012, July 2014 - Nug of the Month: July 2012
This is a great article....See how our growing power use helps stimulate the economy by increasing electrical companies profits and that tax money is generated thru this as well...Another good point to push for non-legal states to consider!! More power used, more system maintenance and upgrades, equals more jobs as well!!

This should also be a big push for people to research and further develop the LED and Plasma growing light industries which are even more efficient in terms of electrical usage vs performance. Many of the existing LED grow light companies are showing pretty damn good results for using a fraction of the power, lets hope this industry grows as well!!! If I was a solar company, I would for sure also be customizing systems for growers and targeting this market heavily...especially after those stats....come on Solar Energy companies...band together and help us get rid of these old, ignorant anti-weed laws....it only will help your business grow!!!


Also...remember...cannabis is a plant...it uses CO2 for food..the more we grow...the more we will reduce our carbon footprint on our earth!! If they would just decriminalize it finally and for good...imagine what a yard or acre of marijuana plants could reduce per year!! Also..look at the root system of cannabis...if used in agricultural settings it could help reduce soil errosion as well!!! I even read that after the chernobyl accident, cannabis and help were planted to absorb the radioactive materials in the soil....How about Hemp for Japan, 2012!!

Also with reduction of greenhouse gasses...we currently have been using and experimenting with bio-diesel. Well did you know that hemp produces much more ethenol production than corn...almost double, and at the same time, has much better soil conservation, higher yields and needs much less pesticides than corn to produce..... not only that but for bio diesel with hemp, it has far less production costs than corn...

http://www.votehemp.com/PDF/The_Case_for_Hemp_as_a_Biofuel2008.pdf


I really hope our federal government realizes how stupid they are being by keeping this very beneficial plant illegal!! People need jobs, economy needs money, sick and ill people need non pharmaceutical options to medicate with, hemp being a superfood for humans creating a healthier America, and all of this could be improved if they would take there heads from there buttholes!!!
 

CannaVince

New Member
Great info on a duhhhh topic....humans in general use alot of power....who cares......again I also pay mine every month....THIS JUST IN.....cars are using to much patrolium....plants are using to much foxfarms and there's a cookie shortage..the root cause of this is MMJ......AND...now over to sports will Stuart........Stuart?......
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
The electricity use of the typical grow operation approaches 200 watts per square foot

That estimate for a "typical" grow is higher than the person that sat down and dreamed up the numbers for this study.

Yes, growing indoors uses electricity.

Go check the electrical usage of your plasma television, newer computer (my buddy's has a 750-watt power supply and he only turns it off twice a year - just long enough to install a newer version of his OS, lol), jacuzzi heater... And God help you if you live in an all-electric house and therefore do not have a gas water heater, cook stove, or furnace.

It's all relative.
 

datrippp

New Member
wow, thats way high an estimate, I guarantee you I have a "typical" grow, Hell I have 2 full bedrooms I use for growing and still dont come anywhere close to your 200w square foot. somebody got bad info, Not that that ever happens though.. lol.. Also, dont forget they still think Reefer Madness was a true dipiction of how weed makes people act.. lol.
 

doublejointed

New Member
Well if your growing small amounts, CFL's are very economical. they are available in 300 watt in the 2700k range with an output of 4200 lumens...i have up to 4 at a time on a 18-6 cycle it cost about 19 bucks a month...they cost like $15.00 per bulb
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
Those aren't 300-watt CFL bulbs! What your describing seems like closer to 65-watt ones. I've seen 200-watt CFL bulbs that produced around 12,800 lumen. A 300-watt one could reasonably be expected to produce more than that (although I have only seen up to 250-watt ones personally, so I don't know).

Also, when selecting higher-wattage CFLs (say, 105-watt and above) you might wish to consider a "rosebud" type that is open so that the illumination that bounces off the reflector can find an easier path back through to the plant. Something that looks like this:
Parmax_rosebud.JPG


The bulb on the right, for comparison, is either a 23- or 26-watt bulb. The one on the left is, IIRC, a 105-watt one.

A 300-watt CFL bulb would be... larger. And almost certainly require a mogul socket.
 
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TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
well they are 300 wat CFL bulbs ...you can get them at the home depo... heres the link to see what they look like.68-Watt (300W) Soft White CFL Light Bulb--DISCONTINUED-28968RP at The Home Depot

No, that's a 68-watt bulb. You know, 68-watt bulb, consumes 68 watts. A 300-watt bulb consumes... 300 watts.

Don't be confused by the "equivalent" garbage they print in the ads (and on the box). They're comparing the CFL bulb to an incandescent bulb, which is a bulb that has no place in anyone's grow room in the first place.

It's just marketing speak from someone who wishes to sell people bulbs to replace the incandescent reading/area lights in their home. And all it does is confuse the easily... err... people.

Equivalent, lol. By their (il)logic, a 400-watt HPS bulb is equivalent to a 3883 watt bulb. Which is utter lunacy - it's a 400-watt bulb.

heres a pic with a 100 watt and a 300 wat CFL
DSCN08514.JPG

That's a picture of a 23-watt (26-watt?) and a 68-watt bulb. Go back, look at the picture I posted again, and notice the size difference of the bulbs in it. Read the actual wattage on the boxes. Look at the title of the link you posted. Notice the "68 watt" text in it:19:.
 

doublejointed

New Member
ohhhhhh...ok, yes it does say it's 68 watt equivalent on the box. but it still works, and from the little research i've done it's all about lumins& lux. 2 of those bulbs put out 8,200 lumen's,with reflectors cutting the inside dimensions to half a cubic meter that doubles my lumins to16,400 lumen's...so it's pretty cheep lighting for a small time grower. i'm no rocket scientist i'm just a guy tryin to grow enough to ease the pain :)
 

TorturedSoul

Member of the Month: May 2009, Oct 2010, Sept 2017
Not disputing the fact that it works for you (glad that it does, btw). Just wish they'd not come up with that particular bit of marketing, it's confusing to people who don't understand it (like most things in life are - until one understands them).

It's cool. Glad you're growing.
 
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