How are Illegal Pot Operations Affecting Georgia’s Wildlife and Water?
Illegal pot operations are hurting Georgia’s ecosystems, and law enforcement is becoming more aggressive in the hopes of stopping it.
Except under limited circumstances, marijuana remains illegal in Georgia. Still, many people want to sell and distribute it to make a profit and so, one of the only ways to do that is to grow their own. It is risky to grow the drug in your own backyard, however, so people often wander deep into forests and other land that is not their own to grow marijuana more discreetly. This is known as guerrilla growing, and it is more common than many people think. It is also killing the climate and ecosystems, such as the marine life in Georgia.
Why are Illegal Pot Operations Bad for the Environment?
Cannabis growers that want to fly under the government’s radar have a difficult job ahead of them. Pests may want to feed on the leaves and buds of pot plants, which can quickly destroy an entire crop. Weeds may pop up among the plants, essentially starving them of water and nutrients in the soil. Additionally, rodents may invade the crop and eventually destroy it.
To combat these problems, pot growers use a number of toxins. Neurotoxins are used to kill rodents that come too close to the plants, while a substance known as carbofuran is often used to keep insects and other pests at bay. Carbofuran is so toxic that it has been banned in several countries, including the United States. Still, many studies, including one that came out of California, found the toxin in different forest ecosystems.
It is not only the animals that are killed directly after coming into contact with these substances that are harmed. It is also the animals that feast on the carcasses of animals that have died from them. When they consume the carcass, they also consume the toxin and die a short while later. It is thought that over 90% of the mountain lion population in California has been exposed to toxins due to these operations, and one can assume that many animals in Georgia have also been affected.
How do Illegal Pot Operations Affect the Waterways?
It is not only the forests and surrounding ecosystems that are affected by illegal pot operations. When toxins are used on cannabis plants, they seep into the groundwater. Additionally, when the plants are watered, the excess runs off into larger bodies of water.
When this happens, it contaminates the water and everything living within it. It can also have an adverse effect on anyone who accesses that water, such as any person living near it or in any city that gets its water from that source.
The only way to stop it from happening, and to get Georgia’s ecosystems back to normal, is to heavily investigate and prosecute these illegal pot operations, authorities say.
Are You Facing Charges for an Illegal Pot Operation? Call Our Georgia Criminal Defense Attorneys
Local authorities are becoming even more eager to track down illegal grow operations and put an end to them. Sometimes, they are overzealous and charge the wrong person. If you are facing charges, our Norcross criminal defense attorneys at Zimmerman & Associates can help. Call us today at (770) 350-0100 to learn how we can help you beat the charges or get them reduced.