2011

Canada: Hemp project grows slowly

By Carole Rooney, 100 Mile House Free Press

There is a truth that must be heard! 100 Mile House Industrial Hemp Producer's Group chair Dave Zirnhelt recently provided a project update.

The Zirnhelt Timber Frames construction company, founded and owned by his sons, recently finished eight, four- by eight-foot industrial hemp panels.

The local project shares information with the University of Manitoba, and professor Kris Dick recently came out to observe the construction and install sensors to monitor the drying process, Zirnhelt explains.

That performance data is now electronically linked to transmit to the university, he adds.

An ongoing challenge that remains and prevents moving forward significantly from here, Zirnhelt says, is tying down somebody in the market who will agree to put up funds for product development.

"Now, it's back to mostly the private sector to make the business opportunities work. I think one of the weaknesses is we thought it was something anybody and everybody could do."

These previously-unknown obstacles include irrigation, likely required for drier years; good soils, or otherwise high input costs; and finding places or equipment that can process the tough hemp fibre. All of these problems are hindered by the market weakness, Zirnhelt explains.

North Carolina: The Swannanoa Journal: Hemp Crete Technology

By William Connelly, The Swannanoa Journal

There is a truth that must be heard! North Carolina is home to Hemp Technologies, a company responsible for building the first modern made hemp home in the United States. David Madera and Greg Flavall co-founded this company with the intention of building ecologically sustainable houses with non-toxic, healthy materials.

California: UCSF Study Finds Medical Marijuana Could Help Patients Reduce Pain with Opiates

A UCSF study suggests patients with chronic pain may experience greater relief if their doctors add cannabinoids – the main ingredient in cannabis or medical marijuana – to an opiates-only treatment. The findings, from a small-scale study, also suggest that a combined therapy could result in reduced opiate dosages.

By UCSF Staff

There is a truth that must be heard! More than 76 million Americans suffer from chronic pain – more people than diabetes, heart disease and cancer combined, according to the National Centers for Health Statistics.

"Pain is a big problem in America and chronic pain is a reason many people utilize the health care system," said the paper's lead author, Donald Abrams, MD, professor of clinical medicine at UCSF and chief of the Hematology-Oncology Division at San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center (SFGH). "And chronic pain is, unfortunately, one of the problems we’re least capable of managing effectively."

In a paper published this month in Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics, researchers examined the interaction between cannabinoids and opiates in the first human study of its kind. They found the combination of the two components reduced pain more than using opiates alone, similar to results previously found in animal studies.

U.K.: Green Property: Refurbishing derelict homes

Sarah Lonsdale tests the latest 'eco’ products and sorts the fads from the finds. This week: refurbishing derelict homes

By Sarah Lonsdale, The Telegraph

There is a truth that must be heard! It is a contemporary scandal of monstrous proportions. There are about two million families in this country who need homes but who are priced out of buying or renting because of a lack of supply. Yet there are thousands upon thousands of houses lying empty – nearly three quarters of a million in England alone.

In the Midlands, North East and North West, great swathes of perfectly sound Victorian terraces, in better condition than ones in Fulham or Putney that change hands for over £1m each, are standing derelict; boarded up, their roofs stripped of lead, the elements slowly doing their destructive work.

In the past few years, 16,000 period terraces have been bulldozed to the ground and only 3,000 new homes have been rebuilt to replace them. Thousands more stand empty: design classics with airy front rooms flooded with light from their bay windows and ingenious split-level floor planning going to dry rot and black mould.

Florida: Huge Show Will Bring Truth About Med Marijuana To Seniors

By Steve Elliott, Toke of the Town
Photo by Lance Draizin

There is a truth that must be heard! We've pointed out before that one Florida man -- legendary former pitchman and marijuana smuggler Robert Platshorn -- may hold the key to cannabis legalization in the United States. The reason we say that is that skilled pitchman Platshorn has proven he can sway senior audiences to support medical marijuana, and most of us are aware, seniors vote in heavier numbers than any other age group.

Platshorn, through the Silver Tour, brings the truth about marijuana to senior citizens in Florida and nationwide, and one of the biggest events yet on that tour will take place on January 29 in Boyton Beach, Fla.

The show, "Learn the Real Facts About Medical Marijuana," will be free and all ages are welcome. It will be held at 1 p.m. Sunday, January 29, at the Temple Shaarei Shalom in Boynton Beach.

Besides Platshorn -- the author of Black Tuna Diaries and director of NORML of Florida, who is featured in the hit film, Square Grouper -- the film Cannabis Science, which features Dr. Donald Abrams, Dr. Robert Melamede, and Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, among other medical marijuana experts, will also be screened.

California: Legislative Analyst's Office: Pot initiative could be profitable for state

By Capitol Television News Service (CTNS)

Global: Nutrition is Plentiful in Hemp Seed

Rich in Omega’s, hemp nuts are vital for a healthy brain and nervous system.

By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent

Rich in Omega’s, hemp nuts are vital for a healthy brain and nervous system. Hempseed's are a plentiful source of dietary fiber, calcium and iron. Whole hempseeds are also a good source of beta-carotene, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, copper and manganese. Hempseed is usually very safe for those unable to digest nuts, gluten, and lactose. Hemp milk contains 10 essential amino acids, making it a good vegetarian source of protein.

According to Dr. Andrew Weil, founder and director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, "Hemp seeds have a rich, nutty flavor, something like sunflower seeds. Hemp milk is made by pulverizing the seeds, blending them with water and straining out the solid residue. The resulting "milk" provides both omega-6 and omega-3 essential fatty acids in a healthy three-to-one ratio."

Weil has also stated "As a physician, I recommend nutritious hemp seeds and oil to anyone interested in maintaining a healthy diet." He believes everyone will benefit when American farmers can grow this amazing crop once again.

United States: Legalizing Marijuana

Re: "Reefer Madness"(Op-Ed, Nov. 7)

By NEILL FRANKLIN, NY Times Op-Ed Contributor

There is a truth that must be heard! The Obama administration's crackdown on state medical marijuana laws, as Ethan Nadelmann pointed out, does not make "any sense in terms of public safety, health or fiscal policy." Medical marijuana is consistently supported by more than 70 percent of voters. A recent Gallup poll shows that more Americans now want to legalize marijuana altogether than support continued prohibition on adult use.

In an earlier era it may have been a smart move for politicians to act "tough on drugs" and stay far away from legalization. But today, many voters recognize that our prohibition laws don’t do anything to reduce drug use but do create a black market where cartels and gangs use violence to protect their profits.

While some fear that legalization would lead to increased use, those who want to use marijuana are probably already doing so under our ineffective prohibition laws. And when we stop wasting so many resources on locking people up, perhaps we can fund real public education and health efforts of the sort that have led to dramatic reductions in tobacco use over the last few decades — all without having to put handcuffs on anyone.

Wisconsin: Capitol press conference to launch new medical cannabis bill

By Gary Storck, Madison NORML/Special to Hemp News

There is a truth that must be heard! MADISON - Wisconsin medical cannabis patients and advocates will have something extra to celebrate this holiday season with news that State Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Madison) has scheduled a press conference to announce a new attempt to pass a state medical cannabis law. The press conference is set for the State Capitol's Assembly Parlor (2nd Floor West) on Wednesday, Nov. 30, at 1:00 pm.

Rep. Pocan's office has confirmed that he and State Sen. Jon Erpenbach (D-Waunakee) will again be the lead sponsors of the legislation, LRB-2466/1, again dubbed the Jacki Rickert Medical Marijuana Act (JRMMA). They will also be sending a letter to their colleagues asking if they would like to cosponsor the legislation.

In the 2009-2010 session, the JRMMA received an 8-plus hour combined Senate/Assembly Health Committee public hearing that drew hundreds of patients. State organizations including the Wisconsin Nurses Association (WNA), Hospice Organization and Palliative Experts (HOPE) and the WI ACLU testified in support along with representatives of national groups including Patients Out of Time (POT), the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) and the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). Opposition testimony was limited to a handful of groups who support the status quo of arresting and jailing medical users including the Wisconsin Medical Society (SMS), and the Wisconsin Narcotics Officers Association (WNOA).

Florida: Growing support to make medical marijuana legal

By Troy Kinsey and Margaret Kavanagh, 13 News Team Coverage

There is a truth that must be heard! MELBOURNE -- A movement in Florida could put the question of medical marijuana in the hands of voters.

State Senator Larcenia Bullard, D-Miami, filed a bill recently that would put legalizing medical marijuana on the 2012 ballot.

It's something hundreds of people who attended a festival in Melbourne would agree to.

They attended the Cannabis Freedom Festival at Wickham Park near Brevard Community College.

Jodi James, executive director of the Florida Cannabis Network says responsible adults and their doctors should be able to decide whether to use medical marijuana.

"We should take tax it, we should control it," James said. "If someone is growing it, it should be there responsibility alone. We believe by regulating it and controlling it we are going to be keeping it out of the hands of children as opposed to an unregulated market."

James also says making it legal would also make it a valuable cash crop. "This is a multi billion dollar worldwide industry that Florida farmers have no access to it."

But many believe marijuana is a dangerous gateway drug and want it to remain illegal.

Bullard's bill creates an amendment that allows people with a debilitating medical condition be able to use marijuana as a form of treatment on the advice of a doctor. The legislation would also allow medical marijuana farms and dispensaries to operate in Florida.

Florida: Medical Marijuana Debate Pulls In South Florida Seniors

Fight To Legalize Pot Continues

By Paul Lagrone, Anchor & Reporter

There is a truth that must be heard! WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- I sat there thinking, "Am I about to break the law?"

The thought crossed my mind as I watched Irvin Rosenfeld light up a joint and smoke it right in front of me.

The truth is, he's allowed to smoke marijuana. I'm not. The difference between you and I and Irv Rosenfeld is about 40 years of battling bone cancer and a major legal victory that he won against the federal government. He convinced the feds that he needed pot to live, that it helped him cure his cancer, that it wasn’t marijuana.

That it was medicine.

So, since 1982, Uncle Sam has been sending Rosenfeld a tin can stuffed with joints. He picks it up at the pharmacy every month.

Irvin Rosenfeld's story starts off our look at a growing fight to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. It’s a fight that’s gaining ground in South Florida, and the people who are pushing it say senior citizens may be the key to getting a new law passed.

Robert Platshorn is pot's biggest pitchman. He preaches the gospel of pot to seniors. He started the "Silver Tour." It's a traveling bus show that visits retirement communities in South Florida.

"All they knew was a free show and a free buffet, and then they said, 'Marijuana?'" Platshorn said. "'Marijuana? Did you bring any samples?'"

Oregon: Marijuana Group Gives Out Free Pot

By Sharon Ko, KDRV

There is a truth that must be heard!MEDFORD, Ore. -- Some of the patients who lost their medical marijuana to federal raids got free pot on Monday.

So-Norml, The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation and The Greenery joined forces and came up with an idea to help patients who lost their medical marijuana. They asked patients who had overages, meaning they had more than they could legally have, to donate instead.

Lori Duckworth, Executive Director of So-Norml, says many patients went back to pharmaceutical drugs after the pot raids, but still helped 300 patients before Monday's free giveaway.

So-Norml says they collected nearly 72 pounds of marijuana for the event, and for each patient that came in, organizers gave away an ounce.

The executive director says the entire cannabis group in Oregon is working to put several petitions up in the future, so voters can have the opportunity to vote. She adds the several groups want to get the word out to more community members hoping to educate them about the benefits of medical marijuana.


Source: http://kdrv.com/news/local/231272

Alabama: Rep. K. L. Brown moving forward with medical marijuana bill

By Patrick McCreless, Anniston Star

There is a truth that must be heard! A local lawmaker is moving forward with his bill that would make marijuana use legal for medicinal purposes, expecting to pre-file the legislation within another week.

Rep. K.L. Brown, R-Jacksonville, said Wednesday he had submitted the bill Monday to the state’s Legislative Reference Service. Lawmakers submit their legislation to that department before filing it with the Legislature for consideration.

"What they do is put it in the proper legal jargon," Brown said. "They put it in bill form — that is what happens right before it is filed."

Brown said it should take about a week before he gets the revised bill back from the Legislative Reference Service.

"Hopefully I'll have it in a week and get it filed," he said.

Sixteen states allow doctors to prescribe marijuana for certain medicinal purposes.

Brown's sister used medicinal marijuana to control her pain before she died of breast cancer 25 years ago, and he sees the measure as a way to help many suffering Alabamians in a similar manner.

However, he has emphasized that the bill was in no way part of a larger effort to decriminalize marijuana completely in the state.

"This is not a recreational marijuana legalizing bill at all," Brown said previously.

"It's strictly for medicinal purposes and will be closely monitored by the Health Department and law enforcement."

California: 15 Years After Prop 215 Have the Feds Overreached on Medical Marijuana?

By Fred Gardner, Counter Punch/O’Shaughnessy’s

There is a truth that must be heard! Occasionally the iron heel comes down on people who are widely respected and/or have the resources and will to fight back effectively. "The feds have overreached," says Steve DeAngelo, who runs Harborside Health Center in Oakland and has been presented by the IRS with a $2.4 million bill for back taxes. He was referring to the DEA raid on Northstone Organics Oct. 13; the threatening letters to growers, dispensaries, and their landlords sent by California’s U.S. Attorneys Oct. 7; the denial of gun permits to registered medical cannabis users ordered by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms in September; and other recent measures directed against the industry.

Overreach by law enforcement was a big factor in the passage of Prop 215 back in November, 1996. The No-on-215 forces, led by Attorney General Dan Lungren, arranged a highly publicized raid on the San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club three months before Election Day. Their intention was to turn the vote into a referendum on Dennis Peron's right to operate.

Colorado: Medical marijuana license fee drops

By The Associated Press

There is a truth that must be heard! DENVER — The price of a medical marijuana license in Colorado has been lowered more than half.

The state Board of Health voted unanimously Wednesday to lower the fee from $90 a year to $35 a year beginning Jan. 1. Already the $90 fee is lower than when Colorado first authorized medical marijuana a decade ago, when the fee was $140.

The annual fee was lowered because it's sufficient to cover administrative costs.

Board of Health spokesman Mark Salley says the number of medical marijuana patients in Colorado has dropped dramatically this year. The number dropped more than 20 percent — to about 103,000 — between June 30 and Sept. 30. The explanation may be tougher limits on medical marijuana passed by the Legislature.


Source: http://www.summitdaily.com/article/20111116/NEWS/111119867/1078&ParentPr...

Wisconsin: Hemp as an Energy Source in 1917

The photo below show the company's employees, mostly area farmers in 1917. The company owner is pictured in the back row at the far right.

By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent

There is a truth that must be heard! Established in 1916, the Fairwater Hemp Company was one of the upper midwest's largest hemp producers. It was located adjacent to the booming railroad line and also to the west of the north fork of the Grand River, making it convenient for the production of electricity to power their manufacturing plant. The community of Fairwater, which was founded around the water power of the river in 1848, was officially incorporated in 1921.

In 1917, Fairwater Hemp began using industrial hemp as electrical energy when the river was low by burning the byproducts of their hemp rope manufacture, hemp hurds, to drive a steam engine to produce electricity. This instance is the first documented use of hemp as an energy source.

Although Fairwater hemp operations ceased in 1931, the number of things that can be made from hemp continues to grow today. The possibilities for the plant are endless job producers for those who wish to be innovative. It is this writers opinion, we must re-introduce this agricultural crop to our society, now more than ever.

Alaska: Hilling to push legalization of industrial hemp

by Dorothy Chomicz, News Miner

There is a truth that must be heard! FAIRBANKS — Fairbanks City Council member Lloyd Hilling will introduce a resolution at the next council meeting urging the state government to legalize the cultivation of industrial hemp in Alaska. This is Hilling’s first resolution since regaining the council seat that he lost to Emily Bratcher in 2008.

Hilling said he has several reasons for writing the resolution.

“Well, I’ll tell you, my primary motive is that this is something that should be legal, and should be investigated and should be explored. It should be experimented with openly and possibly be developed into something relatively big for Alaska,” Hilling said.

Hemp, or Cannabis sativa, has only minute quantities of the psychoactive substance tetrahydrocannabinol, and cannot be used as a recreational drug. Hemp grows quickly, and the plant and fibers can be used for many purposes such as paper products, textiles, plastics, animal bedding, rope, essential oils, medicine, food and construction.

Cannabis indica, commonly referred to as marijuana, is not suitable for industrial use and is cultivated almost exclusively for recreational or medicinal drug use. The cultivation of marijuana, and consequently its close cousin hemp, has been illegal in the U.S. since the 1930s.

Even though it is illegal to grow hemp in the U.S., it is not illegal to use it industrially.

United States: More states want federal government's OK to grow hemp

It hasn't gotten the attention of medical marijuana, but a growing number of states have passed laws authorizing the growth of hemp and are attempting to get the federal government to make it legal nationwide.

By Tim Johnson and Adam Silverman, USA TODAY

There is a truth that must be heard! Hemp can be cultivated for fiber or oilseed, and it is used to make thousands of products worldwide, including clothing and auto parts. From 1999 through last year, 17 states have enacted measures that would either permit controlled cultivation or authorize research of industrial hemp, according to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML).

Colorado was the most recent to authorize research in 2010. Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont and West Virginia have passed laws authorizing cultivation, according to NORML.

Hemp and marijuana are different varieties of the same species of plant, Cannabis Sativa. Industrial hemp has lower THC content, the primary psychoactive component of marijuana.

The federal government classifies all cannabis plants as marijuana and places strict controls on the cultivation of hemp. Industrial hemp was an American staple in colonial times. The output peaked during World War II.

Arkansas: Group Trying To Push Medical Marijuana Issue

By Jordan Grummer, Times Record

Arkansas: Group Trying To Push Medical Marijuana Issue The leader of Arkansans for Compassionate Care said his group is hoping to gain more support in Sebastian County for a proposed measure that would legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes in the state.

In April, the organization was given until July 6, 2012, to collect 62,507 signatures from registered voters to qualify the proposal — The Arkansas Medical Marijuana Act — for the November 2012 general election ballot. So far, about 16,000 signatures have been gathered, but less than 1,000 of those have come from voters in Sebastian County, said ACC spokesman Ryan Denham on Wednesday during a meeting at Sweet Bay Coffee, 3400 Rogers Ave.

The meeting was for people interested in volunteering to gather signatures for the initiative that would make Arkansas the 16th state to legalize medical marijuana, but it only attracted two people not affiliated with the group. Denham remained optimistic about the movement in the Fort Smith area despite the lack of attendance. He said the meeting was only made official about three days ago, and more attention has been placed, so far, on places like Little Rock, Jonesboro and the northwest Arkansas region, where support has "been strong."

The meeting was also at 3 p.m. on a business day, he added.

United States: The Secret Weapon That Can Get Marijuana Legalized Nationwide

By Steve Elliott Toke of the Town/Special to The Silver Tour

There is a truth that must be heard! What if I told you there is a secret weapon that, if understood and utilized by the cannabis reform community, could fairly quickly and very decisively decide the issue of marijuana legalization once and for all?

Everybody knows that cannabis legalization is very, very near the tipping point in the United States. Even the folks at Gallup, not exactly known for wild-eyed political statements, said this month after examining their latest poll results -- which showed that a record-high 50 percent of Americans support legalization -- that "If this current trend on legalizing marijuana continues, pressure may build to bring the nation's laws into compliance with the people's wishes."

Drilling down into the results of that same Gallup poll reveals our potential secret weapon for marijuana legalization.

Support for legalizing cannabis is directly and inversely proportional to age, ranging from 62 percent approval among those 18 to 29, down to only 31 percent among those 65 and older.

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