Hemp has been proven useful for a number of uses, however, one use, in particular, could prove useful in the clean-up process for nuclear disasters. Unfortunately, due to the controversy that surrounds the completely innocent plant, it may take a number of legal battles to obtain the go-ahead.
Back in March of 2011, a magnitude 9.0 ‘double earthquake’ hit the eastern coast of Japan. Shortly thereafter, a tsunami also hit the coast, causing the triple meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power plant. The nuclear disaster that followed the event continues to stretch its nasty hands into the world to this day and could take thousands of years to fully recover from.
However, experts are now saying that hemp could aid in the disaster recovery process for removing excess radiation thus shortening the clean-up time exponentially. Apparently, hemp uses a process referred to as phytoremediation, which is the means for how hemp removes heavy metals and excess minerals from the soil.
If hemp was used in the Fukushima fallout clean up, it wouldn’t be the first time it had been used to aid in the removal of toxic radiation. The most famous incident in which it was used was during the 1990’s after the Chernobyl meltdown. A company called Phytotech worked alongside researchers and a Ukraine-based seed bank to plant thousands of hemp plants around the surrounding areas of the nuclear plant that had been seeping radiation into the world.
Hemp could also prove useful in tens of thousands of other polluted areas across the United States that are currently in need of a cleanup before any other buildings are constructed in the areas. Colorado State University has stated that hemp is extremely effective at removing cadmium from soil, which is quite convenient due to the fact that it can be found anywhere as a byproduct of human civilization that is quite toxic to the environment.
Unfortunately, certain legislation, including the Cannabis Control Law, which was enacted shortly after WWII, are slowing the process for its use in the removal of radiation. The Cannabis Control Law refers to hemp cultivation as narcotic, while omitting any mention of marijuana. Of course, permission could be granted for hemp cultivation in Japan, but it would be a very difficult process. Thankfully, three west coast states including California, Washington, and Oregon currently have cannabis cultivation laws in place. Hopefully, laws will be changed in the future so that we may benefit from its cultivation in other areas as well.