Devastating wildfires up and down the West Coast of the United States this week reportedly burned down a number of cannabis farms in Oregon and threatened even more in California and Washington state.
The situation has many marijuana farmers voicing concerns this is part of a “new normal” in which they’ll have to adapt their business models because of recurring wildfires on a nearly annual basis, especially in California.
“We’ve already broken the record for most acres burned in history, and we haven’t even gotten to the worst part of the season. So I think this is the new norm. Fires are just a way of life at this point,” said David Najera, a marijuana cultivation consultant and farmer in Mendocino County, California.
Scientists, for their part, say climate change plays a role in the extreme weather patterns, including the West Coast fires and the huge temperature swing that unleashed snowfall and a sudden cold snap in Colorado that may have destroyed millions of dollars worth of outdoor marijuana and hemp plants.
On the West Coast, cannabis industry insiders say the true toll of the fires is undetermined, both on the financial end for growers and potential impacts for the rest of the cannabis supply chain.
Published: September 11, 2020