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A project under our Farm and Energy Initiative, the Energy and the Cannabis Industry project looks at strategies and procedures for regulating the energy use in the highly energy intensive cannabis industry. 

As the state-law legalization of marijuana expands, the cannabis industry consumes an ever-growing percentage of electricity. This significant increase in electric consumption, when not paired with renewable sources of energy, leads to increased reliance on fossil fuels, puts pressure on grid infrastructure, and undermines the achievement of climate and energy goals. Localities where cannabis is legal are already experiencing negative impacts tied to energy use by marijuana production facilities. and are seeking both technical and policy solutions to mitigate the impact to the grid of cannabis industry expansion. This research project examines energy use in the cannabis industry with the goal of finding policy-based strategies for increasing energy efficiency and renewable energy yse. The team will then create policy design tools to assist state and local lawmakers with regulating energy use in the cannabis industry.

This project is led by Staff Attorney and IEE Professor Genevieve Byrne