April 24, 2010 – The new business markets that could be created from a hemp revolution are boundless. Imagine a new building material that could be harvested in fractions of the time of traditional lumber while providing much more strength and not harming our already fragile forests and ecosystems. Imagine a new source of fuel, created by a weed that can be grown in almost any environment, drought conditions are no problem for this hardy plant. Imagine a new source of bio-degradable material that could be used in making shirts, rugged pants, shoes, reusable shopping bags, coats, suits, paper, packing supplies, carpentry, the list goes on forever. When you wonder why this plant isn’t being utilized now, you get the same answer as you did in the 1930s when this plant’s potential was first being discovered. Dirty Politics, Dirty Lobbyist, Personal Interest.
All Evils preventing us from moving forward. Hemp was just starting to become a main item of trade in the early 20th century when the new and upcoming paper industry was starting to boom due to increased circulation of the newspaper and other reading material. After executives in many lumber and paper production companies started seeing hemp as a threat to their business, they pressed congress with lobbyists who treated all the congressmen very nicely while spreading propaganda through newspapers owned by the Paper industries about myths of “Marijuana making people go insane, raping little girls and killing frenzies.” This sense of fear spread throughout the early US and pressed congress to outlaw this plant, making no distinction between Cannabis, otherwise know as industrial hemp(>1% THC), and its cousin, Cannabis Sativa, otherwise known as marijuana.
The Paper industry had its way. Any competition was now practically outlawed. During the second world war the United States was in need of war supplies and began running a “Hemp for Victory” campaign, aimed at getting farmers to grow hemp for crucial battlefield supplies. The hemp was used to make soldier’s backpacks, fatigue, boot linings, rope, you name it. Though because of new legislation that was enacted in the 30’s, hemp farming was a hard bet while trying to avoid prosecution for marijuana production. Most small town peace officers knew not of the differences of the species and accused those of hemp farming of trying to grow marijuana and then were prosecuted, so the supplies were never made in the US. We had to import the material from our allies.
I am telling you this so you have a slight glimpse of how crucial this plant needs to be utilized, how it was used in the past, how we can start to use it now, in this future. Source.
BioFuel / Plastics: