HEMP – A SOLUTION TO CLIMATE CHANGE

“Every generation faces a challenge. In the 1930s, it was the creation of Social Security. In the 1960s, it was putting a man on the moon. In the 1980s, it was ending the Cold War. Our generation’s challenge will be addressing global climate change while sustaining a growing global economy.” – Eileen Clausen, Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Fossil fuel consumption, and our meat industry can be considered the most responsible for climate change. Around 80% of the CO2 being added to the atmosphere each year currently comes directly from the burning of natural gas, and coal and oil deposits. Agriculture is another significant driver of global warming and causes 15% of all emissions, half of which are from livestock. One pound of beef requires 1,799 gallons of water for the growing of food and the rearing of the livestock.

While the nation states will be debating what can be done to control the situation, there is a simple solution that is being ignored and dismissed due to the politics behind it, and that is the awesome properties and power of the Cannabis plant.

“Hemp is of first necessity to the wealth and prosperity of the nation” — Thomas Jefferson.

Super Crop

Hemp can be considered a ‘super-crop’ that has been grown worldwide for at least 12,000 years. It is one of the most prolific, versatile and powerful bio-tools available to humanity to meet the enormous challenges of sustainability, climate change, environmental degradation and the destruction of eco-systems.

There are more than 25,000 known uses for hemp. It produces food, fibre, fuel and has unique medicinal properties. One hectare of hemp can produce as much usable fibre as four hectares of trees, or two hectares of cotton. It is the world’s most versatile natural product, potentially replacing wood, cotton, and petroleum products, including plastics.

Hemp grows in a short, flexible, summer window of the annual crop cycle and grows in diverse climates and soil types. It does not require pesticides or herbicides, as it grows tightly spaced, out-growing and blocking out weeds. This leaves a weed-free field for follow on crops while simultaneously conditioning and securing topsoil.

The Billion Dollar Cropt

It was considered the ‘billion dollar crop’ by Popular Mechanics Magazine in 1937 before the USA began its campaign to suppress the hemp industry. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both grew hemp. Ben Franklin owned a mill that made hemp paper. Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence on hemp paper. In 1942 when US sources of “Manila hemp,” (a genus of the banana plant), were cut off by the Japanese in WWII, the US Army and US Department of Agriculture promoted the “Hemp for Victory” campaign to grow hemp in the US

Hemp As Bio-Fuel

According to the IPCC between ten and fifteen percent of total global cropland is available for biomass production specifically for energy and transport. The greatest advantage of hemp cultivation, as a method of climate change mitigation, is the comparative ease with which it could be integrated into the existing fossil fuel economy.

With the ability to be grown at all but the very coldest latitudes, hemp could form the basis of an internationally distributed yet locally produced fuel industry. Hemp-based ethanol would not only be a complementary product to the oil economy (combining ethanol with gasoline increases quality of gasoline and produces significant environmental benefits), but could also be used as a direct replacement because it can be used with existing technologies.

It is also the only biomass crop that can add to the food production of land rather than replacing food production, as other biofuel crops, such as corn, triggered global food riots.

Solution to Agro Forestry

Hemp cultivation is 400% more efficient at CO2 absorption than agro-forestry per land use. Its rapid growth rate means it can provide the industrial quantities of biomass required in our modern society. Hemp can be processed into multiple sustainable raw materials solutions to suit the needs of local communities wherever it is grown, and save and preserve remaining forest resources and biodiversity.

Hemp is far less vulnerable to changes in climate, compared to slow and medium growth forests. It also shares many of the biochemical characteristics of hardwood and several metric tons of wood can be produced in a hectare, annually or bi-annually in hotter climates.

Growing hemp on deforested hillsides prevents landslides, run-off, and also prepares land for future crops or tree planting. In addition, it requires low-intensive management and can effectively replace all the goods and services traditionally supplied by depleted forest resources including fuel and shelter.

Water Efficient

An industrial hemp crop (80ha), planted in Nicaragua primarily for seed, survived Hurricane Mitch more or less intact due to its long tap roots and intricate root structures that held the plants securely to each other and the land. Over 60 chemicals called cannabinoids collectively serve to repel insects, improve water use efficiency, prevent water loss and also protect the plant from excessive UV-B radiation.

Compared to cotton that requires about 1400 gallons of water for every pound of produce, hemp requires half that or even less and produces 200-250% more fibre on the same amount of land. The Aral Sea in Russia, once the world’s fourth largest inland lake with a thriving healthy ecosystem is now only 15% of it’s original size due to the cotton industry and the heavy use of pesticides and herbicides. Hemp in comparison, aerates the land, rejuvenates soil, needs no herbicides or pesticides, and creates a thriving ecosystem.

Hemp as Food

Hemp protein contains all twenty-one known amino acids, including the eight essential ones adult bodies cannot produce. Proteins are considered complete when they contain all the essential amino acids in sufficient quantities and ratios to meet the body’s needs.

It can supply any diet with a vegetarian source of essential fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fibre, chlorophyll, and a complete, balanced gluten-free source of the essential amino acids.

Versatile

Hemp is so versatile because, it is seasonal, it increases the nutritional output of the land, it increases yields from other crops in the rotation cycle, and bio-remediates and protects soil, while providing highly useful, versatile biomass and sustainable, biodegradable end products.

The Cannabis plant has been suppressed by the dominating industries that see it as a threat to their monopoly, such steel, pharmaceuticals, cotton, petroleum, plastics and construction. However, it can no longer be ignored as the global environmental crisis we are facing is much greater than the need to profit these unsustainable and destructive industries.

How much longer are we going to sit back and watch our planet go up in smoke while one of the major solutions, Cannabis remains relegated to the sidelines…? it’s time for a Hemp Revolution…

Source: Rebekah Shaman

COTTON VS HEMP

Hemp has been making a lot of noise lately, especially with the growing awareness surrounding the use of hemp oil for treating cancer. Although the word ‘hemp’ still often gets confused and lumped into the same definition as Cannabis, a similar but psychoactive plant, it’s important to realize hemp can be a major game changer for our world if used to its potential. As we go through this post, you will be wondering ‘why don’t we use this stuff all the time.. for everything?!’ Simple answer, farming hemp was banned in the US and other countries in the 1937 because of the threat it caused to certain companies and their businesses. More about that here.

Although hemp has many practical uses, let’s focus on one that would affect us every day; clothing. For this, we will compare hemp to cotton, as cotton is a very popular resource used in clothing production. We’ll need to focus on various areas that have to be taken into consideration when comparing the two so we can determine not only what is better for us, but also what is best for our environment as it’s important to view things holistically. Let’s do it.

Water:

Cotton: To grow cotton you require about 1400 gallons of water for every pound you intend to produce. That’s a lot of water! Some areas of the world that produce cotton are running out of fresh water due to the production of cotton as well as clothing. Some areas of the world have even experienced desertification as a result of producing cotton.

Hemp: You require about half the amount of water to produce hemp as you would if producing cotton. Hemp is a strong and reliable plant that grows very quickly. Not only that, hemp produces about 200% – 250% more fibre in the same amount of land compared to cotton.

The victor: Hemp

Pesticides:

Cotton: One of the biggest downsides to cotton is how much pesticides are used to grow the plant. Although organic cotton farming is beginning to catch on a bit more, the production of cotton worldwide takes up about 25% of the world’s pesticide use. The other unfortunate factor is that these chemicals can end up being absorbed into our skin as we wear clothing.

Hemp: The beauty of hemp is that it requires no pesticides to grow. In fact, it doesn’t require any chemicals at all to grow. The growing nature of the plant competes with weeds and over-powers their ability to sustain themselves. This allows the hemp plant to grow freely and quickly.

The victor: Hemp

Comfort & Longevity:

Cotton: Generally very comfortable to begin with, as you continue to wear cotton it ‘breaks in’ to become even more comfortable. There is no denying how soft cotton can be, but it is also true that cotton fibres break down over time and the more it is washed the faster it breaks down.

Hemp: The hemp fibre used in clothing is a strong natural fibre that, like cotton, gets progressively softer with each passing day you wear it and each time you wash it. Although it may not start off quite as soft, it is still soft and certainly would not be considered uncomfortable. The plus is that the fibre is much stronger and durable. Repeated washed will not break the fibre down anywhere near as quickly as cotton. Creating more hemp clothing would mean we would need to produce much less clothing.

The victor: Hemp

Breathability & Wicking:

Cotton: Breathability is certainly a strong suit for cotton. It also does not hold odours for very much. This is quite possibly one of the biggest downsides to synthetic fibres, they don’t dispel odour well and don’t often deal with moisture well either. While cotton has a natural wicking system, it also holds moisture a little longer than what might be considered most desirable.

Hemp: Performs very well when it comes to breathability and wicks moisture away from the body effectively. Hemp also carries anti-bacterial properties that trump any other natural fibre. This means hemp will not mold or grow mildew very easily. Since it also does not hold odours, hemp clothing edges out cotton slightly on this one

The victor: Almost a tie, but hemp is our pal on this one again

Aesthetics:

Cotton: Without the use of dyes, cotton comes naturally in white, cream and off-white. Cotton can be dyed naturally or synthetically to achieve a desired color. The growing knowledge that cotton is very taxing on the environment and not healthy for our skin is creating quite the demand for organic cotton. In terms of the fashion market, organic cotton is showing up more and more.

Hemp: Given the various processes available to remove fibres from the stem of a hemp plant, hemp can be naturally creamy white, black, green, grey or brown. Without even requiring the use of dye, hemp comes in a variety of colors. Of course, you are still able to dye hemp both naturally and synthetically. Hemp is quickly becoming more and more popular in the fashion market as designers see the potential in the material while being a very environmentally sound option. Since it is durable and lasts a long time, it can be attractive to certain designers.

The victor: Hemp

Final Decision

Winner by knockout and growing undisputed champion of natural harmony, HEMP! This isn’t to say that cotton, especially grown organically, is not a good material, it simply isn’t better all around than hemp. In some cases, cotton could be a must use if something specific is being produced. The biggest differences are in the facts that hemp requires much less water and no pesticides to produce. Not only that, it boasts a lot more fibre per acre. Concerned about excess CO2 in the atmosphere? Hemp is spectacular at sequestering CO2! Take the time to check out some hemp clothing around the internet or see if there are some local stores who sell it. Although options can sometimes be limited right now, look out for more hemp clothing as awareness continues to spread!

Source : Collective Evolution

Hemp Meet Bamboo

We are being weaned off energy to provide higher profit margins for depleting resources!

We must support the climate agreement to provide the missing link. After four years in preparation, we are debuting “Plan B” to the climate change problem. We all will not build wind turbines or solar panels. However, we all buy plastic products, hygiene products and toilet paper. We need another option to make an impact. Here is ours. We propose expanding the renewable energy discussion to the 84,000 toxic chemicals in products we buy every day made from fossil fuels. Where our protest is conveyed through purchase, leading to US factories producing hemp and bamboo products to service companies like Ford, Kimberly-Clark, Ikea, and while also supplying small and medium size businesses lower cost materials.

It’s simple.

No Profit, No Pipelines, No Pollution.

Here is how we fight. Not through Protest, but through Purchase!! If we pressure US companies to build products with hemp and bamboo we can create local supply chains, jobs and lower cost materials. It is cheaper to grow than drill. That is where I need your help to build OUR economy. Crowdfunded farms, factories processing hemp and bamboo. It is possible. There is a perfect Storm for Change and YOU can start it. Let’s hit them where it hurts!

Our primary focus is to return jobs to the United States. A bioeconomy is more than about renewable energy. It is also about the materials we use in the development and manufacture of consumer goods.

Factories close to fields of bamboo and hemp is our goal. It’s not rocket science. It’s prudent business practices. We start with the easiest products to manufacture from bamboo & industrial hemp:

Food Biochar Pulp filler Fibers

As manufacturers realize a reliable domestic and international supply chain, businesses gain the incentive to return manufacturing activities to the United States.
you invest in her?
Maybe. What if she told you she is also selling her fiber to Georgia Pacific for toilet paper and paper towels? Your money is more secure. If her clothing suddenly failed overnight, you’re still safe. She still has revenue from the Hemp and bamboo growing. With the over 50,000 uses Hemp and Bamboo provides, she also has another shot at success.
Now, what if your city government wants to lease the abandoned land or an ugly factory you drive by every day? The Government sees jobs from your neighbor with the same failsafe in place. A big corporation buying the plants.

It starts here.

Pressure big business and tell them you will buy bamboo and hemp products. Offer them the security of a market and save the companies millions spent every year to reach you. Tell them. They will listen. It’s only to their benefit. They have great public relations and if we can’t grow, they can say “we tried.” Right now all companies like Ikea are claiming is “we can’t find it.” Show them where to look.

Political action will facilitate government economic development packages for businesses. Manufacturing in the United States will be feasible at labor rates that will create a vibrant economy again.

Manufacturing locally can also protect manufacturers’ intellectual property and alleviate additional costs of overseas supply chains such as:
Copies or ‘fakes’ in the marketplace.
Higher quality control resulting in lower litigation rates.
Negative Public Image.

They want to do this and they will. Why? They lied about the greenness of products in 2007 and 2008 with the Greenwash scandals all to get your dollars. They don’t have to lie anymore.

appreciate if you could share our Go Fund Me page and Petition. If you are unable to donate please share our petition and this project! We cannot “market” this it has to be organic or our voices will be lost on the companies we are pressuring to order bamboo and hemp fibers. We need your help. By purchasing the game, you are also supplying 200 games to Nonprofits and NGOS that are building young minds to provide themselves and their families a future.

Proceeds additionally pay for the travel and endless meetings it will take to give your friends the “guarantee” they need. They will support your project when you start growing hemp and bamboo They know the hemp and bamboo will have somewhere to be sold and they can invest in your farm or factory via the JOBSACT!

Here is our SOLUTION!

We were also featured in Treehugger and will be doing additional interviews this week.

Let’s work together for TANGIBLE solutions not Laws or promises to change without penalties! Let’s work together to create a bioeconomy that creates more opportunities for all of us, new commodity markets and material options for young entrepreneurs. With the recent push for renewable energy, we must deny the profits from the fossil fuels that go into the construction of turbines and solar panels

GoFundMe Campaign
gofundme.com/bioeconomy
Petition:
causes.com/campaigns/97871-tell-u-s-companies-we-will-buy-change-to-end-fossil-fuels

If you wish to donate directly to the Foundation please click this link. foundationforabioeconomy.org/#!donate/cirf

We can DO THIS! We can put the Power of Protest through purchase in YOUR HANDS! Help us tell US Companies we will buy Hemp and bamboo in paper pulp, biomass, auto interior parts, and BIOPLASTICS! Provide us a voice, we will provide methods everyone can duplicate.

Amanda Clayton-Stevens

Hemp Can Save the World

Hemp is one of the world’s oldest crops. It also happens to be one of the most versatile. From plastics to paper, the hemp plant provides the means for humanity to live in harmony with the environment and the ecosystems that support it — without us wanting for anything.

Just to give you an idea how far this plant can take us, here are 15 amazing ways hemp can be a game-changer for planet Earth…

#1) Growing hemp prevents pesticide pollution
Did you know hemp is naturally resistant to pests? Unlike cotton or flax (which are estimated to consume 50% of all pesticides) growing hemp does not require pesticides or herbicides.

 

When pesticides are sprayed on land, they can easily seep into water sources such as a river, ocean, or pond. If pesticides contaminate a body of water it can harm the living creatures within that water source (fish, frogs, insects, and more) along with anyone ingesting it.

Pesticides have been linked to cancer, birth defects, ADHD, and Alzheimer’s Disease to name a few. So not only are pesticides dangerous for the environment, they are also a hazard to our health.

By integrating hemp, we can significantly reduce our exposure to unnecessary toxins and pollutants.

#2) Hemp helps restores soil fertility
Hemp can grow in a wide variety of terrains and soil types. It forms deep roots helping to hold the soil together. This in turn prevents soil erosion. In fact, hemp also increases the microbial content of the soil. And the incredible benefits don’t end there.

The stem and leaves of the hemp plant are rich in nutrients. After harvesting, these nutrient-dense remnants of the hemp plant can be returned to the soil, rejuvenating it for a richer yield the following year.

#3) Hemp can produce biodegradable plastics
Americans used over 45 billion plastic water bottles in 2015 alone. Even crazier: plastic water bottles can take anywhere between 400 and 1,000 years to decompose.

Considering the United States’ recycling rate for plastic is only 23 percent, there is room for improvement to say the least. [Recycling is also a one-time-only deal, meaning plastics are actually down-cycled into other forms of plastic before ultimately reaching landfill —

The basic building blocks of plastics are cellulose derived from petroleum. Yet petroleum is highly toxic. Hemp on the other hand happens to be the greatest cellulose producer on earth. It also happens to be biodegradable.

Why not use non-toxic and biodegradable hemp for producing plastics? Instead of stuffing our landfills with toxic chemicals we could reuse and recycle natural products.

#4) The hemp plant absorbs toxic metals
Soil sustains life. The plants that feed, clothe, and house us originate from the earth. Yet we’ve become increasingly detached from this basic human need. Meanwhile, man-made waste has contaminated soil across the globe. Both our planet’s health and our personal health are under duress, and the need for change is imminent.

It has already been proven that hemp can eliminate toxins from the environment. Hemp is so effective at absorbing toxic materials it has even been used for removing nuclear radiation from Fukushima and Chernobyl.

 

#5) Hemp is an outstanding renewable biofuel
Imagine if there was a non-toxic fuel source that could be domestically produced and was totally renewable. Turns out that material already exists. It’s been on this planet for hundreds and thousands of years.

Hemp converts to biodiesel at a 97 percent efficiency rate. It also burns at a lower temperature than any other type of biofuel. Plus, when burned in a diesel engine, hemp eradicates the exhaust odor of petroleum with the pleasant smell of hemp.

With over 4,000,000 miles of roads in the United States, transitioning to hemp biodiesel could help heal our planet one mile at a time.

#6) Fabrics made from hemp do not contain chemical residue
Did you know the majority of synthetic fibers we use today are manufactured from polymer-based petrochemical materials (AKA highly toxic materials)? Producing these synthetic materials requires an energy-intensive process, burning large amounts of gas, coal, or crude oil. And if that wasn’t enough, this type of manufacturing process releases toxic emissions into the air while also leaving toxic residues within the fibers. Not exactly a pleasant notion.

Yet, this problem can be avoided by switching to hemp. Hemp fibers are easily removed from the plant and can create clothing with zero chemical residue. Hemp is also a highly durable fabric and UV resistant.

#7) Hemp can balance effects of carbon emissions
Industrial hemp has the power to transform the environment. Hemp is unique in that it is one of the few crops capable of balancing human carbon emissions through rapid carbon dioxide uptake. It does this through a process known as carbon sequestration.

When cultivated, hemp actually captures carbon emissions from the atmosphere. Essentially, hemp helps sequester or “trap” carbon from the air into plants. For every ton of hemp produced, 1.63 tons of carbon is removed from the air.n

8) Cultivating hemp prevents deforestation
Deforestation is increasing across the globe at alarming rates. Scientists now believe the rate of deforestation equates to a loss of 48 football fields every minute. Within 100 years, it is estimated there will be no rainforests. Shamefully, the United States has less than 5% of the world’s population but consumes more than one-third of the world’s paper.

But there is hope. Hemp can easily replace trees as the source of raw material for wood and paper. Once acre of hemp can produce as much paper annually as four acres of trees. While trees take years to mature, hemp can be grown and rapidly reproduced within months. Hemp paper is also more durable than paper produced from trees.

In other words, this is a no-brainer – transitioning to hemp could literally save our trees, and ultimately, our planet.

#9) Industrial hemp conserves water
It can take more than 5,000 gallons of water to produce 2.2 pounds of cotton. In fact, cotton is one of the most water-dependent crops around and is quickly depleting our limited freshwater sources.

Meanwhile, hemp requires minimal irrigation in comparison to cotton. A study in the UK comparing cotton production to hemp production found that hemp required 634-898 gallons of water to produce 2.2 pounds of hemp.

Considering hemp is suitable for fiber production, it is clear to see the superior option.

 

#10) Hemp supports sustainable farming practices
Farmers who practice sustainable farming techniques know the importance of rotating crops by season. Not only does it keep the soil nutrient-rich, it also increases the overall yield.

Hemp happens to be an ideal plant for crop rotation. It enriches the soil while also removing toxins. Growing hemp helps keep the soil and air more habitable for years to come.

#11) Growing hemp prevents soil compaction and erosion
Did you now soil compaction and erosion are some of the biggest problems plaguing farmers today? This is particularly true for farmers within the Midwest who depend on two staple crops – soybeans and corn.

Corn contains a deep and fibrous root system that penetrates the ground deep below the surface. Over time, these roots can lead to soil compaction during the winter and spring. Soybeans also have a strong root system but do not penetrate below the topsoil. As a result, soil erosion can frequently occur.

However, hemp is capable of repairing damaged soils. In fact, introducing hemp into crop rotations not only adds diversity but can also reverse the effects of soil compact and erosion. Hemp contains deep roots that can reach up to nine feet below the surface. These hearty roots help to break up soil compaction while also increasing nutrient absorption.

#12) Hemp builds stronger and healthier homes
The use of the hemp plant can extend into every aspect of our lives – including our homes. Fiberboards made from a hemp-based composite are stronger and lighter than those made from wood. Not to mention the combination of hemp and lime (hempcrete) results in a soundproofing system and insulation superior to that of concrete.

Hemp homes are also shown to have incredible durability. One hemp home in Japanis estimated to be over 300 years old!

Perhaps even more astonishing, hemp homes also provide a healthier living environment. Unlike fiberglass or drywall, hempcrete is nontoxic and mold-resistant.

If we’re smart about this, hemp homes will be the future of green living.

#13) Hemp reduces air pollution
Air pollution is not only harmful to human health but can also cause a number of devastating environmental effects. While China is the world’s largest producer of carbon dioxide, the United States is close behind at number 2.

Should we choose to ignore this reality, these problems are likely to increase even further. Meanwhile, hemp can break down pollutants and improve air quality. Hemp can even be used as a paper source, eliminating the need for chlorine bleaching – a direct cause of excess carbon dioxide in the environment.

#14) Hemp grows in almost any environment
Imagine if there was a crop that could be cultivated almost anywhere in the world. In fact, this crop required zero pesticides and could produce over 25,000 products. Better yet, this crop could mature within months and keep producing for years to come. Surprise – that crop is hemp. Hemp is an incredibly durable plant. While hemp thrives in a mild climate and humid atmosphere, it can survive almost anywhere.

From China to Colorado, hemp can grow in a broad range of climate types, which means hemp has the potential to be sourced locally. A source of food, income, and more – hemp farming could change lives for the better. Hemp can also lead to more sustainable farming, which in turn will bolster local economies while having a positive impact on the environment.

 

#15) Hemp can help curb world hunger
Around 795 million people are undernourished globally. In developing countries (where 92 percent of children live) 30 out of every 100 will experience stunted growth due to a lack of nutrition.

Now, imagine if hemp were in the picture. Not only is hemp inexpensive, it can be grown almost anywhere. In fact, hemp seeds are considered to be one of the most nutritionally dense food sources on this planet. A complete protein – hemp seeds supply the body with amino acids, vitamins, and much more!

In addition, hemp seeds can also produce two vital food products – oil and flour. So not only is hemp nutritionally rich but also versatile.

Cultivating hemp as a staple crop could change people’s lives for the better worldwide, especially if you consider the vast number of people that could not only be fed but also nourished by this superfood.

It’s Time We Return to Our Roots.
Humankind have been cultivating hemp for thousands of years. Some anthropologists even believe hemp was the first agricultural crop domesticated by humans over twelve thousand years ago.

It is time we return to our roots.

Switching to hemp products may not solve all of the world’s problems but it is a start. Hemp has the potential to leave a cleaner and greener planet for future generations. So what are we waiting for? It is high time to let the hemp shine once and for all.

Source : The Green Flowers

Hemp Vs. Nuclear Waste

Have you heard of phytoremediation, or decontamination of soil? The combination of Ancient Greek “Phyto” or Plant with a bit of Latin “Remedium” to mean plants that clean or restore the balance of the soil and air. And guess which plant is the best at doing this? You got it. Hemp.

After the 1986 Chernobyl Disaster it was discovered that certain plants absorb radiation, heavy metals and other manmade toxins as part of their natural cycle. Hemp is rather unique because about 75% of the plant remains viable for safe production of many different products from the stalks and seed after it does a rather magnificent job cleaning up all sorts of nasty chemicals and toxins from the soil.

Hemp, the hero of Chernobyl

For over a decade, industrial hemp growing in proximity to the abandoned Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Pripyat, Ukraine has been helping to reduce soil toxicity. Slavik Dushenkov, a research scientist with Phytotech, one of the organisations behind the hemp plantings, stated that “hemp is proving to be one of the best phyto-remediative plants we have been able to find”.

In neighbouring Belarus, much of the rural land was contaminated, and authorities there are also pursuing the use of hemp in an attempt to clean up the soil. The harvest produced will be turned into ethanol; one added benefit of industrial hemp over other phytoremediation plants is that it can also be used to produce biofuel, potentially adding a second use for the crop after it removes toxins from the soil.

US imposed and outdated Cannabis Control Law affects Japan’s clean-up efforts

Following the devastating environmental damage caused by the Fukushima meltdown, Japan is considering using hemp to aid their clean up efforts. However, due to the Cannabis Control Law forced into Japanese law by the occupying U.S. powers in 1948, hemp may only be grown under license, which are highly restricted and difficult to obtain.

Hemp could potentially benefit hundreds of thousands of sites across the globe—it is estimated that in the USA alone there are 30,000 sites requiring remediation. And let’s not forget that the radioactive waste from the Fukushima disaster is now washing up on America and Canada’s west coast.

Hemp can help

In this video, Dr. Masaru Emoto talks about industrial hemp as a solution to the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster, and may help provide some more answers to any lingering questions on why hemp is such a proven and valuable tool in the fight to repair human-inflicted damage to our soils and ecosystems.

“It is the suggestion to plant a lot of hemp in the land of Fukushima. Hemp is prohibited in almost all places in the world, but I am supporting the movement for hemp to revive….I think it has the…potentiality to purify the environment…I believe hemp fields will bring the eradication effect” – Dr. Masaru Emoto

Watch the full video below with English subtitles. Tell us your thoughts on the eradication effect hemp can bring to polluted soils and ecosystems on social media or in the comments section below.

Source : Herb

HEMP – A SOLUTION TO CLIMATE CHANGE

“Every generation faces a challenge. In the 1930s, it was the creation of Social Security. In the 1960s, it was putting a man on the moon. In the 1980s, it was ending the Cold War. Our generation’s challenge will be addressing global climate change while sustaining a growing global economy.” – Eileen Clausen, Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Fossil fuel consumption, and our meat industry can be considered the most responsible for climate change. Around 80% of the CO2 being added to the atmosphere each year currently comes directly from the burning of natural gas, and coal and oil deposits. Agriculture is another significant driver of global warming and causes 15% of all emissions, half of which are from livestock. One pound of beef requires 1,799 gallons of water for the growing of food and the rearing of the livestock.

While the nation states will be debating what can be done to control the situation, there is a simple solution that is being ignored and dismissed due to the politics behind it, and that is the awesome properties and power of the Cannabis plant.

“Hemp is of first necessity to the wealth and prosperity of the nation” — Thomas Jefferson.

Super Crop

Hemp can be considered a ‘super-crop’ that has been grown worldwide for at least 12,000 years. It is one of the most prolific, versatile and powerful bio-tools available to humanity to meet the enormous challenges of sustainability, climate change, environmental degradation and the destruction of eco-systems.

There are more than 25,000 known uses for hemp. It produces food, fibre, fuel and has unique medicinal properties. One hectare of hemp can produce as much usable fibre as four hectares of trees, or two hectares of cotton. It is the world’s most versatile natural product, potentially replacing wood, cotton, and petroleum products, including plastics.

Hemp grows in a short, flexible, summer window of the annual crop cycle and grows in diverse climates and soil types. It does not require pesticides or herbicides, as it grows tightly spaced, out-growing and blocking out weeds. This leaves a weed-free field for follow on crops while simultaneously conditioning and securing topsoil.

The Billion Dollar Crop

It was considered the ‘billion dollar crop’ by Popular Mechanics Magazine in 1937 before the USA began its campaign to suppress the hemp industry. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both grew hemp. Ben Franklin owned a mill that made hemp paper. Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence on hemp paper. In 1942 when US sources of “Manila hemp,” (a genus of the banana plant), were cut off by the Japanese in WWII, the US Army and US Department of Agriculture promoted the “Hemp for Victory” campaign to grow hemp in the US.

Hemp As Bio-Fuel

According to the IPCC between ten and fifteen percent of total global cropland is available for biomass production specifically for energy and transport. The greatest advantage of hemp cultivation, as a method of climate change mitigation, is the comparative ease with which it could be integrated into the existing fossil fuel economy.

With the ability to be grown at all but the very coldest latitudes, hemp could form the basis of an internationally distributed yet locally produced fuel industry. Hemp-based ethanol would not only be a complementary product to the oil economy (combining ethanol with gasoline increases quality of gasoline and produces significant environmental benefits), but could also be used as a direct replacement because it can be used with existing technologies.

It is also the only biomass crop that can add to the food production of land rather than replacing food production, as other biofuel crops, such as corn, triggered global food riots.

Solution to Agro Forestry

Hemp cultivation is 400% more efficient at CO2 absorption than agro-forestry per land use. Its rapid growth rate means it can provide the industrial quantities of biomass required in our modern society. Hemp can be processed into multiple sustainable raw materials solutions to suit the needs of local communities wherever it is grown, and save and preserve remaining forest resources and biodiversity.

Hemp is far less vulnerable to changes in climate, compared to slow and medium growth forests. It also shares many of the biochemical characteristics of hardwood and several metric tons of wood can be produced in a hectare, annually or bi-annually in hotter climates.

Growing hemp on deforested hillsides prevents landslides, run-off, and also prepares land for future crops or tree planting. In addition, it requires low-intensive management and can effectively replace all the goods and services traditionally supplied by depleted forest resources including fuel and shelter.

Water Efficient

An industrial hemp crop (80ha), planted in Nicaragua primarily for seed, survived Hurricane Mitch more or less intact due to its long tap roots and intricate root structures that held the plants securely to each other and the land. Over 60 chemicals called cannabinoids collectively serve to repel insects, improve water use efficiency, prevent water loss and also protect the plant from excessive UV-B radiation.

Compared to cotton that requires about 1400 gallons of water for every pound of produce, hemp requires half that or even less and produces 200-250% more fibre on the same amount of land. The Aral Sea in Russia, once the world’s fourth largest inland lake with a thriving healthy ecosystem is now only 15% of it’s original size due to the cotton industry and the heavy use of pesticides and herbicides. Hemp in comparison, aerates the land, rejuvenates soil, needs no herbicides or pesticides, and creates a thriving ecosystem.

Hemp as Food

Hemp protein contains all twenty-one known amino acids, including the eight essential ones adult bodies cannot produce. Proteins are considered complete when they contain all the essential amino acids in sufficient quantities and ratios to meet the body’s needs.

It can supply any diet with a vegetarian source of essential fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fibre, chlorophyll, and a complete, balanced gluten-free source of the essential amino acids.

Versatile

Hemp is so versatile because, it is seasonal, it increases the nutritional output of the land, it increases yields from other crops in the rotation cycle, and bio-remediates and protects soil, while providing highly useful, versatile biomass and sustainable, biodegradable end products.

The Cannabis plant has been suppressed by the dominating industries that see it as a threat to their monopoly, such steel, pharmaceuticals, cotton, petroleum, plastics and construction. However, it can no longer be ignored as the global environmental crisis we are facing is much greater than the need to profit these unsustainable and destructive industries.

How much longer are we going to sit back and watch our planet go up in smoke while one of the major solutions, Cannabis remains relegated to the sidelines…? it’s time for a Hemp Revolution…

Source: Rebekah Shaman

Hemp Plastic is just ONE solution to a healthy planet

Plastics are big business. Look around and count the items within arm’s reach that are made from plastic. The substance has made life infinitely more convenient; people carry groceries in it, drink water from it, wrap foods in it, and even use it to build devices to access online blog posts about plastics. Its presence is as ubiquitous as its potential uses are endless. We need to use hemp plastic.

But the problem with plastics is that they never go away, ever. There is no global solution to the disposal of single use plastics such as grocery bags and water bottles. One trillion single-use plastic bags are consumed annually around the globe. One million bags are being used every minute. Each of these bags is used only for a matter of minutes, but take up to 1,000 years to degrade.

Every square mile of ocean, which takes up 70% of the planet, contains 46,000 pieces of plastic trash in various stages of decomposition, with the majority broken down into fragments which are consumed by sea life that is in turn consumed by humans, introducing toxic Bisphenol-A (BPA) into human diets, which may be the cause of fertility problems among women in countries reliant on the ocean for food, among other health concerns.

The consequences of all that plastic are steep and expensive. Nearly 50 percent of life, and therefore the entire food chain, exists the world’s oceans. All around the globe, beaches are buried in layers of plastic garbage, sometimes 5-10 feet deep. Scientists are at a loss as to how to clean up the damage already done, but agree that continued contribution to the plastic waste problem must stop.

The irony is that while solutions to the mounting problem of plastic garbage already exist, they are either dismissed as inconvenient (plastic bag bans or taxes, carrying reusable water bottles) or the means of their production are made illegal.

That’s right, illegal.

Hemp provides an excellent alternative to plastics yet remains illegal (and therefore cost prohibitive) due to its association with the drug marijuana. But there is no good reason for this. Even in the absence of international treaties or regulations requiring the end of plastic waste, taking concrete steps to implement hemp substitutions still make sense.

Currently, growing hemp in the United States is prohibited, but that may quickly change. Hemp reform has already made significant progress in the US Congress, and so a thriving domestic hemp economy may be just around the corner. And that will do more than just replace plastic bags.

Hemp plastics are destined to create an economic boom, slow the rate of plastic pollution in our oceans and air (they are flame retardant) and could be used on the exact same machinery already being used to create plastic goods like bottles and bags. Hemp plastics are not only 100% biodegradable, meaning they do not contribute to permanent pollution, but they are also 2.5 times stronger than standard use plastics.

Thus, a rapid switch can be made from a weak, disposable commodity which remains in a polluting form for thousands of years to a strong, organic, biodegradable alternative. And all that’s holding back a better future is bad public policy.

Source : Time for 4 Hemp

Hemp: how one little plant could boost America’s economy

Image a plant that cuts cholesterol, reduces our exposure to toxins, can ease joint inflammation, proves more durable than concrete, and can provide the economy with much-needed jobs for farmers and manufacturers. This wonder of the world exists – it’s hemp. But it is illegal to grow in America.
Hemp and marijuana both are cannabis plants – in fact, both are cannabis sativa. Hemp, however, contains virtually no THC (the psychoactive ingredient in pot), so smoking it will not get you stoned. Yet industrial hemp has endured 80 years of purgatory and prohibition at the hands of the government.
Hemp has been hailed as the little plant that could for centuries – for making fabric, rope, sails, paper and canvas. Hemp plants require less chemical spraying than cotton, soy, corn and wheat. It can help reduce soil degradation by faring better with less water and in drier climates. Paper made from hemp could help reduce deforestation, and requires fewer chemicals for processing than wood pulp. Hemp fabric has antibacterial qualities that can help it fight staph infections in hospitals.
That’s not all. Hemp seeds and oils offer more and better proteins than soy, along with the highest percentage of essential fatty acids and the lowest percentage of saturated fats compared with other oils. The cannabinoids (CBD) in hemp can reduce inflammation and may even protect against anxiety and depression, seizures and brain injuries, according to recent studies.
Former NFL quarterback Jake Plummer became a promoter of hemp in general after he discovered that CBD oil from hemp alleviated headaches and post-football aches. If he was still playing, however, he’d be forbidden from using it. “We need to change the perceptions about hemp,” he says, adding that he’d love to see the stodgy NFL “lead that charge” by funding research into the oil’s benefits. “The NFL needs to help get players off prescription meds as much as possible, and hemp could help.”
A political battle
America already safely consumes $580m worth of products made from imported hemp every year – from milk to T-shirts to soaps. Yet because it has been illegal to import or cultivate seeds, the farming, processing and manufacturing jobs associated with hemp belong to the 30 countries growing it, from Canada to France to China.
“We are the only industrialized nations not to allow it,” says Joseph Yost, a Republican member of Virginia’s state legislature and hemp supporter, who points out that hemp could replace tobacco as a cash crop and bring back some of the manufacturing jobs that have left his state.
But after years of lobbying, Eric Steenstra, president of Vote Hemp and executive director of the Hemp Industries Association, says efforts to legalize it are having an impact. The first breakthrough came in 2014, when Congress allowed for hemp to be grown for research purposes in states that permitted it. In 2016, 9,649 acres of hemp were planted across 15 states, and 30 universities conducted research on the crop. It allowed skeptical legislators to see the plant’s potential up close, and “helped demystify it for some”, Steenstra says.
The next, more politically daunting, step is persuading Congress to remove hemp from Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act, where it was added by Richard Nixon’s administration.
“Only kneejerk drug warriors are still against hemp and every month that becomes increasingly more absurd,” says David Bronner, CEO of Dr Bronner’s, the popular health product company. Bronner positioned his company as an ardent backer of the cause. “I never dreamed the process of making it legal to grow hemp would take this long,” he said.
Growing and dissent
Alex White Plume, a former tribal president of the Oglala Sioux, began trying to grow hemp nearly two decades ago but was repeatedly persecuted by the federal government. He recently returned to South Dakota from the Standing Rock pipeline protests and equates the two struggles. “They are exactly the same,” he says. “We need to heal the earth and hemp can be used to replace many of the things we use today that [are harmful].”
In 1998, White Plume realized hemp could help break the Pine Ridge reservation’s cycle of deep poverty. He persuaded the tribe to legally adopt an ordinance differentiating between industrial hemp and marijuana, and thought tribal sovereignty would protect him from federal incursions.
His family researched the farming and business side – he envisioned as many as a dozen different businesses arising from the different parts of the hemp plant – and in 2000 they planted the crop not far from Wounded Knee Creek. “The Bureau of Indian Affairs had long tried to turn us into farmers, and I thought hemp was the way to do it,” White Plume says.
Then US officials showed up with guns, bulletproof vests … and weed-whackers. They decimated his plants. White Plume tried again in 2001 and 2002, until the government got an injunction against him for growing hemp without DEA permission. Despite help from Vote Hemp, White Plume says he nearly went broke appealing and still lost the case.
“It is awful and oppressive,” White Plume says. “The state won’t do diddly squat for our people but the government comes in and takes away my plants.”
Vote Hemp – backed by money from Bronner – recently hired a new lawyer and last year a federal judge finally lifted the federal court order. White Plume, 65, is still not allowed to grow hemp, but can now be paid to consult on hemp projects in other states.
“The whole thing makes me angry,” says White Plume, who adds that he no longer has the energy to become a hemp mogul but that his sister and daughter are developing business plans. “The United States should honor the treaties and our sovereignty.”
Ryan Loflin, a Colorado alfalfa and sorghum farmer, followed White Plume’s footsteps. In 2013, he planted 60 acres of hemp without government permission as an activist statement. “This is a political movement,” he says.
Loflin got media coverage, successfully daring the government to step in. “It was just time for this to happen,” Loflin says. “My community has been struggling for 30 years and lost a lot of farms but hemp can be beneficial to society and valuable to my community.”
A long political battle
Hemp’s demise traces back to the 1937 Marihuana Act, which imposed taxes and bureaucratic burdens on farmers. The culprit was the First Federal Bureau of Narcotics commissioner, Harry Anslinger, whose department needed a worthy project when alcohol was legalized.
“After Prohibition politicians needed their next new enemy to fight against,” says Dan Ratner, co-founder of Healthy Brands Collective, which owns the Tempt line of hemp-based food products. Ratner believes that the DuPont company (which made nylon, a new rival for hemp) and newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst (who owned many paper and timber interests) slandered hemp by playing up its cannabis roots, but it’s also plausible that hemp got accidentally caught up due to indifference and misunderstanding.
During the second world war, with Filipino imports cut off by Japan and the war machine desperate for hemp products such as tow lines, parachutes and aviation lubricant, the government produced a short film called Hemp For Victory, encouraging farmers to return to the plant; with federal aid thousands of acres of hemp were grown. Afterward, hemp faded back into obscurity until 1970 when Nixon put marijuana on Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act – and industrial hemp was again lumped in with it.
Yost, who sponsored a Virginia bill legalizing hemp, says years of educational efforts have made inroads. These days, both Steenstra and Bronner are optimistic about legalization, thanks to changing perceptions and the demand for farming and manufacturing jobs.
“Outsourcing American jobs is not a popular concept right now,” adds Polis. “There’s so much potential for the economy it would be crazy not to move forward,” Steenstra says, adding that it is also a states’ rights issue that should appeal to conservatives.
He says Iowa senator Charles Grassley, the judiciary committee chair, has repeatedly bottled up hemp bills to prevent a vote but Bronner says Republicans like Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul of Kentucky see the crop’s commercial potential and have been “amazing champions who may finally liberate hemp”.
Legalization is just the first step. “We need infrastructure,” Bronner says, so hemp can be processed and manufactured on a large scale. Legalization will attract investors and banks but supporters also hope for government grants and subsidies to create a market for hemp.
Loflin, the Colorado farmer, agrees: “We need to build this industry from the ground up.”
Source : The Guardian

How To Build a Hemp House

Hemp All over the world, people are turning to “Eco Houses” in a desperate effort to live more sustainably. Hemp is already an important building material in the Eco House construction industry, and could prove crucial to building a more sustainable future. So how can we make the best and most cost-effective use of this precious, renewable resource?

Across the world, conventional building practices are becoming ever more unsustainable. The need to house expanding populations adds to the ever-increasing pressure we are putting on our ecosystems, as we exploit natural resources with seemingly unstoppable haste.

We are packing more and more people into cities each year, and ravaging our environment in a desperate effort to sustain this inherently unsustainable lifestyle.

Why We Need to Rethink Urbanization

Due to this, many people are beginning to yearn for an alternative. Of course, it’s not just the unsustainability factor that really speaks to people – it’s the unnatural loss of community, the dislocation from our roots, the exposure to dangerous air pollution, the lack of sunlight and green spaces for kids to thrive and grow.

There are countless reasons that humans are better off living in smaller, greener communities, and slowly but surely, we’re starting to see recognition of this fact growing in the places it matters most – in the media, in the hearts and minds of the public, and in certain forward-thinking areas of government in various countries worldwide.

Another fundamentally important point is that housing in major, desirable cities is becoming insanely unaffordable throughout the world. For many, the idea of turning one’s back on “mainstream” society and heading for the hills is becoming too much to resist – and for some, it’s rapidly becoming one of the only choices left.

Eco-Houses May Be Part of the Solution

So, you may be among the thousands of people currently weighing up your home-owning options, and you may have hit upon the idea of finding the right location to build your own sustainable eco-house.

Hemp is an increasingly popular choice of eco-friendly construction material. It has many advantages, including excellent moisture and temperature regulating properties, light, flexible yet extremely durable physical characteristics, and remarkable resistance to fire, rot and animal/insect infestations.

It is quick-growing, requires few pesticides or fertilisers, and the process of turning the harvested hemp into building materials is simple and non-environmentally impacting. Thus, we will focus on hemp as the primary constituent of our hypothetical eco-house – and to read more about its advantages and disadvantages compared with other eco-materials, check out this informative resource.

So how should we be going about turning plans into reality?

The concept of buying a ready-built house is scary enough, and adding the responsibility of actually building it may be simply impossible for many. But if the circumstances are right, it could save a great deal of money, and it’s the ideal way to ensure that your home is just how you want it.

Here, we are not aiming to provide all the answers on how to build a hemp eco-house, but rather to provide readers with a general guide to the basic considerations and process needed to get started.

Planning & Budgeting for Your Hemp House

Of course, the first major consideration is budget. Unless you have previous house-building skills (or are lucky enough to have a friend or relative with a construction company!) you will probably need to shell out money for an architect – so figure that into your expenditures right away.

Typically, architectural fees end up around 10-15% of the total construction cost, but this may vary depending on your specific location and plan. Here’s a UK-based architect specialising in hemp; you may find similar specialists in your area.

An architect will take care of creating your house plan, according to the number of rooms and levels you require. Generally, smaller is better in sustainability terms – it reduces the literal footprint on the land, it reduces the cost of building materials, and it reduces the long-terms cost of heating and maintaining the property. In fact, so-called “tiny houses” are rapidly growing in popularity, so if you can make it fit, do it!

Take a look at the International Hemp Building Association’s list of partners for some initial ideas and options, and if you know of a reliable specialist local to you, why not let us know in the comments – you may end up helping out like-minded people in your area.

Having a basic plan before you buy land is a good idea – the plan can always be adapted as needed to fit the spot you eventually decide on. But with even a basic plan, you can calculate costs and budget far more effectively going
Finding the Right Place to Build Your Hemp House

Then, the next major step is finding the right place to build your hemp home. This will depend greatly on local laws, regulations, prices and availability. Consider your site carefully. There may be online resources that will help you locate a plot of land – for example, this guide outlines how residents of the UK can find and obtain land to build on.

A site that has previously been built on may be the best option – an old, tumbledown cottage could be torn down and replaced with something far more durable and sustainable, for example.

In some European countries such as Spain and Italy, entire villages and small towns have been abandoned, partly due to the difficulty of hooking them up to the grid – but if they can be repurposed for off-grid communities, they could solve numerous problems at once.

Generally, this approach is preferable to building on wild land – it’s hardly an eco-house if the habitats of countless birds and insects have been destroyed to create it!

Brownfield sites may also be worth considering (anything that makes “greener” use of urban land is worth considering at this stage), but as these are often contaminated with industrial waste, they may be a better option for long-term projects that involve hemp phytoremediation of soil for several years prior to actually building. Many people wish to grow their own food right next to their eco-house, so ensuring that soil is clean and healthy is essential in these cases!

While you are in the process of obtaining land (make sure you have planning permission from your local authority BEFORE investing in land), adapt and refine your strategy as needed to stay within budget and make the most effective possible use of available resources.

You may be planning to receive your utilities from the grid (now that renewable providers are becoming more widespread), but for many people interested in building an eco-home, energy self-sufficiency is a big factor. Therefore, you should be considering and costing your options here – solar panels, passive solar heating, waste-water recycling systems, rainwater collection, wind turbines, and even micro-hydroelectric.

Take a look at the Tiny House Blog’s tips for generating clean energy, and check out this Makeuseof post for an in-depth exploration of several options.

The cost of installing these technologies is rapidly falling, and providing a small home with 100% renewable, clean energy may be easier than you think!

Which Materials Do You Need? Where Will You Source It?

Sourcing and obtaining your materials is the next major consideration. Typically, you’ll be using Hempcrete over a timber frame, although steel or concrete frames may also be used. One major disadvantage of Hempcrete is that it is not sufficiently load-bearing to support roofs or multiple stories without a frame. You’ll also typically be working on concrete foundations, as Hempcrete is not suitable for foundations.

So what is Hempcrete? It’s a simple mix of hemp hurds, also known as “shivs” or “cores” – the woody inner part of the hemp stem that’s left over after all the fibres are removed – with lime and water. In building, “lime” refers to calcium oxide and calcium hydroxide derived from limestone and chalk. Mixtures of water, natural fibres and lime, which binds the fibres together, have been used in sustainable house-building for thousands of years.

So how can you obtain Hempcrete? If you have opted to work with a company specializing in hemp construction, they should have all the materials you need, and may have ready-made blocks and panels available. For example, the Netherlands-based hemp producer Hempflax offers a range of ready-produced hemp blocks and panels, as well as step-by-step consultancy services on how to use them.

If not, you can look for suppliers of hemp hurds and buy it in by the pallet or truckload to mix yourself – a process that is relatively simple, but requires the use of a large “forced action pan mixer” (in preference to a conventional drum mixer, which may not ensure the most even mix).

If you opt to mix your Hempcrete yourself, the cost will vary greatly according to local availability and laws. 1000kg (2200 lb) unprocessed hemp hurds works out at around $1100 in the US (€980), where cultivation of hemp is still not fully legal, and just €340 in Italy ($380), where hemp has been legal for decades.

Here is an excellent guide on mixing Hempcrete yourself, as well as advice on hemp-lime-water ratios (which are of the utmost importance for ensuring waterproofing and durability), and tips on how to build with it (even down to the number of hours/labourers needed per project).

Could You Live in a Hemp-Based Eco Community?

If you are considering building a hemp house, you may find that there are others in your local community that have similar ideas. If so, you may be able to cooperate to buy in the materials needed in bulk at more competitive prices, and exchange relevant local and hemp-specific knowledge.

There may already be local groups or communities that you can join, or you may be able to form a new organization of like-minded people, to work together on building eco-homes, or even to start whole new off-grid communities! Hemp could be the ideal basis for long-term, off-grid sustainable communities, as just one hectare can yield enough hurds for a 135 m2 (1,450 sq ft) house. It can also be grown at or near the construction site to save even more on transportation costs!

Precedents are being set for this in many countries worldwide. In the small Scottish settlement of Achabeag, Hempcrete will be the basis for the twenty eco-houses they plan to build; the first two prototypes have already been completed. The planners hope that Achabeag will “form a blueprint for new, sustainable communities across the north and west of Scotland”.

Hempcrete was developed in France in the 1980s, based on a rediscovered historic recipe that had been in widespread use centuries ago. Since the modern form was developed by French company Isochanvre, it has been the basis for more than 250 homes in various locations across France.

Hemp houses have now been built in the UK, Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and many other countries worldwide. Currently, the UK’s University of Bath is undertaking a three-year study to develop prefabricated Hempcrete panels, which could make building with hemp even easier in future!

Right now, hemp is comparable in cost to conventional building materials, and has so many green credentials that it’s already worth serious consideration. Furthermore, as the industry expands and hemp increases in popularity, costs are likely to come down and building with hemp will become even more affordable!

Source : Sensiseeds

Hemp fuels- Environmentally friendly fuel sources

The basics: Hemp can provide two types of fuel.

1. Hemp biodiesel – made from the oil of the (pressed) hemp seed.
2. Hemp ethanol/methanol – made from the fermented stalk.

To clarify further, ethanol is made from such things as grains, sugars, starches, waste paper and forest products, and methanol is made from woody/pulp matter. Using processes such as gasification, acid hydrolysis and enzymes, hemp can be used to make both ethanol and methanol.

In this day of oil wars, peak oil (and the accompanying soaring prices), cllimate change and oil spills such as the one in the gulf by BP, it’s more important than ever to promote sustainable alternatives such as hemp ethanol. Hemp turns out to be the most cost-efficient and valuable of all the fuel crops we could grow on a scale that could fuel the world.

And as it turns out, the whole reason for hemp prohibition – and alcohol prohibition – may have been a fuel the realization that OIL production is threatened by any competing fuel source, especially one that requires no modifications to your car!

What is Hemp Biodiesel?
Hemp biodiesel is the name for a variety of ester based oxygenated fuels made from hemp oil. The concept of using vegetable oil as an engine fuel dates back to 1895 when Dr. Rudolf Diesel developed the first diesel engine to run on vegetable oil. Diesel demonstrated his engine at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1900 using peanut oil as fuel. Hemp biodiesel come from the pressing of the hemp seeds to extract the oil. Through a process explained here , hemp biodiesel can be made.

Hemp biodiesel can be made from domestically produced, renewable oilseed crops such as hemp. With over 30 million successful U.S. road miles hemp biodiesel could be the answer to our cry for renewable fuel sources. Learning more about renewable fuels does not mean we should not cut back on consumption but does help address the environmental affects of our choices. There is more to hemp as a renewable fuel source than you know

Why Hemp Biodiesel?

Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel that runs in any conventional, unmodified diesel engine.
It can be stored anywhere that petroleum diesel fuel is stored. Biodiesel is safe to handle and transport because it is as biodegradable as sugar, 10 times less toxic than table salt, and has a high flashpoint of about 300 F compared to petroleum diesel fuel, which has a flash point of 125 F.
Biodiesel can be made from domestically produced, renewable oilseed crops such as hemp.
Biodiesel is a proven fuel with over 30 million successful US road miles, and over 20 years of use in Europe.
When burned in a diesel engine, biodiesel replaces the exhaust odor of petroleum diesel with the pleasant smell of hemp, popcorn or french fries.
Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel in the US to complete EPA Tier I Health Effects Testing under section 211(b) of the Clean Air Act, which provide the most thorough inventory of environmental and human health effects attributes that current technology will allow.
Biodiesel is 11% oxygen by weight and contains no sulfur.
The use of biodiesel can extend the life of diesel engines because it is more lubricating than petroleum diesel fuel, while fuel consumption, auto ignition, power output, and engine torque are relatively unaffected by biodiesel.
The Congressional Budget Office, Department of Defense, US Department of Agriculture, and others have determined that biodiesel is the low cost alternative fuel option for fleets to meet requirements of the Energy Policy Act.
Source : Hemp.com