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How hemp alternatives are shedding new light on environmental woes


Sources - Wikimedia Commons

The 2018 Farm Bill was signed by some legislators with a pen made from hemp plastics, which is fitting given the legislation legalized hemp as an agricultural product. [1]


But that’s far from the limit of the textile’s material science potential. In fact, much attention has recently been directed toward the prospects for hemp and other renewable bio-products to replace swathes of the plastic industry reliant on petroleum and other chemicals.


Reporting has already shown that hemp can grow without fertilizers other crops frequently require and which produce somewhat harmful runoff and other side effects. Cotton and polyester can also use up to 50% more water than hemp, making it an ideal candidate for certain forms of clothing and textile uses.


There is also some scientific literature that seems to indicate that hemp crops could go a long way in cleaning soil with a process called bioremediation, though like many questions regarding the substance that was only recently made legal once more, answers surrounding the question need far more study to be conclusive. [3]


Still, hemp’s ability to replace oil and chemical-based additives in everything from beauty products to plastics may be its greatest area of potential. Recent reporting by Forbes indicates that the plant, if studied sufficiently and brought up to quality seed and yield standards of more common staple crops, may be able to rival the lucrative petroleum industry. [2]


Despite the promise of hemp’s environmental advantages, both from the agricultural attributes listed above and the fact that the plant is highly recyclable and renewable, the entrenched corporate oil industry won’t be beaten easily.


Forbes’ story on the matter does point out that certain politicians on the rise across the nation running and winning on platforms of environmental reform may be part of a change on this front, although their successes have been divisive and faced major pushback.


A liberalizing trade in hemp and CBD may drive the industrial growth and sales needed to support research required to make the seed, manufacture and materials more successful, however.


The clearer answers are around just what can be accomplished with hemp and cannabis generally, the better companies and customers will be able to suit their needs. The list of hemp’s abilities seems to grow by the week as new and exciting efforts are undertaken to find more uses for what Rolling Stone calls “a miracle plant.” [3]


While political solutions linger on the back burner accompanied by uncertainty, serious success has been made by normal people showing their support and demand for healthy, safe and life-changing alternatives with hemp and CBD.


Sources

[1] https://www.wsj.com/articles/hemp-clothing-is-happening-and-no-it-wont-get-you-high-11554404607

[2] https://www.forbes.com/sites/ellistalton/2019/04/04/industrial-hemp-is-the-answer-to-petrochemical-dependency/#6908797172d8

[3] https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/can-hemp-clean-up-the-earth-629589/

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