Marijuana Growth in British
Publication Date: June 2004
Publication Format: Public Policy Sources
Executive Summary: The cultivation and production of marijuana in British
Columbia highlights the problems inherent in the enforcement of laws that
are generally ignored by broad sectors of the populace. Some 7.5 percent
of all Canadians report they use marijuana currently, and over their lifetimes,
23 percent report themselves as having used marijuana at least once.
This paper raises several issues that have the cumulative effect of suggesting
that in the long term, the prohibition on marijuana cannot be sustained
with the present technology of production and enforcement. To anyone with
even a passing acquaintance with modern history, it is apparent that we
are reliving the experience of alcohol prohibition of the early years of
the last century.
In Canada, and more specifically British Columbia today, as with alcohol
nearly a century ago, marijuana is too easily produced and exported to
be controlled with the tools available to law enforcement in a free society.
The return on investment is sufficiently great so that for each marijuana
growing operation demolished, another takes its place.
[Download PDF here]
Stephen T. Easton, Senior Fellow