My blog is dedicated to the exploration of industrial hemp in America including the rich history of all forms of cannabis, the evolving law and politics of hemp and marijuana, the many products made from cannabis and the capacity, real or imagined, of hemp to re-industrialize rural America and revitalize the American family farm.
Tuesday, May 23, 2017
Move Over Cotton, Say Hello to Hemp! The Forbidden Crop that is taking the World by Storm
Marijuana is so beneficial that the plant alone could fix the United States economy. It can be used for so many different things, and hemp is one of the most natural alternatives to… Well, basically everything. Hemp is a close cousin to marijuana, however, its THC percentage is rather microscopic. The health benefits are vast, but the environmental benefits are endless.
Hemp contains massive amounts of fiber which causes your body to slow digestion, and balance it out. A diet rich in hemp promotes digestive regularly. It is also full of omega-3 fatty acids which reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, lowers blood pressure, and increases your overall cardiovascular health. However, that’s just a fraction of the health benefits. Hemp is also extremely amazing for the environment! Polystyrene or plastic is one of the most detrimental materials to our environment.
Hemp can benefit the environment in so many different ways. For starters, it can be used as an alternative to fuel. It is low in moisture, and it dries quickly. This makes it an efficient biomass source of methanol. Not only that, but the waste sources of hemp products are also great sources of ethanol. One acre of hemp yields 1,000 gallons or 3,785 liters of fuel. Hemp allows a lesser reliance on fossil fuels, which are non-renewable sources of energy and will not be able to meet the increasing global demands for long.
Hemp can also be a fantastic substitute for paper. Hemp is extremely low in lignin, actually lower than wood. This makes it ideal for manufacturing paper. It can be turned to pump much faster and easier than wood too. Modern day papers from wood are treated with chemicals to bleach it, resulting in greenhouse gas emissions such as dioxin. In addition, hemp can also be utilized for construction! Fiberboards made of hemp fiber is stronger and lighter than wood based fiberboards. This could also minimize the construction process waste from cement and wood.
Some Added Environmental Benefits:
Hemp offers a way to live in harmony with the environment and ecosystems we depend on.
Hemp is the world’s oldest and most versatile crop. In fact there are more than 25,000 known uses for it.
Hemp has the potential to replace all major non-renewable raw materials. Hemp fiber is stronger and more versatile than any other plant derived fibre, including cotton and wood. Hemp could also potentially replace petroleum products including plastics.
Deforestation is occurring at around 3% per year, and hemp is a far superior resource since it can be grown to maturity in 100 days. Hemp paper is far stronger and durable than paper made from trees.
Hemp is used in the world’s major currency banknotes because it is so strong and water resistant. It is also a sustainable replacement for concrete.
Hemp can grow anywhere and doesn’t require pesticides, herbicides or fungicides. Evidence suggests that it can lift heavy metals from polluted soil. It also adds nutrients to the soil by tapping into sub-soil nutrients other plants cannot access.
Hemp biomass fuel produces no sulfur and can be effectively used as a relatively clean power source due to its 95% fuel to feed ratio