Letter: Cannabis Growers Must Follow Strict Energy Regulations | Letters to the editor

About the editor:

I was recently appointed to the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission based on my experience managing a regulated industry. After working on the Gaming Commission for years to help build sustainable casinos, I was delighted to learn that this new agency is already requiring licensees to prioritize energy efficiency practices and track their efforts.

In fact, the Commonwealth of Marijuana companies comply with some of the strictest regulations in the country in this regard.

A commissioned working group for energy and the environment, chaired by my predecessor, managed these issues from day one.

Since then, last July, the Commission began collecting energy and environmental data from applicants and requires licensees to critically assess ways to reduce energy consumption, optimize renewable energy production, reduce electricity consumption, participate in energy efficiency programs and more .

Our agency also promotes outdoor cultivation through an accelerated license review and reduced fees. In addition, all indoor growers, with the exception of the smallest indoor growers, must limit lighting to 36 watts per square meter of canopy or use energy efficient equipment from the Design Light Consortium.

So the commission has actually followed the guidelines on the Commonwealth’s energy and environmental goals and will continue to work with state partners to ensure marijuana companies embrace the advances in Massachusetts.

After moving from one regulator to another, I’ve noticed certain similarities between gaming and cannabis. Aside from their obvious role as an employer and economic engine for Massachusetts, these new companies must continue to innovate and adhere to strict energy efficiency safeguards to reduce the state’s carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions.

Bruce Stebbins

Cannabis Control Commission

Worcester

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