marijuana

Marijuana plant
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

The moratorium on marijuana businesses in unincorporated parts of King County is just about over. The King County Council voted last night to lift the four month ban.

Council members also considered a move to allow retail pot stores in neighborhood business zones. People like Linda Mango asked policy makers to approve of that legislation.

Even though Oregon voters legalized recreational marijuana in 2014, you can't legally buy the stuff in more than 100 Oregon communities. That's because some city and county governments have banned recreational marijuana businesses.

But voters in nearly half of those places will have the chance to overturn those bans this November.

Washington's Poison Center has unveiled the new warning label to identify products that are not for children.
Washington Poison Center

Mr. Yuk may have a new sibling in Washington: a bright red hand.

Washington's Poison Center has unveiled the new warning label to identify products that are not for children, like edible marijuana. The new label has a red hand, the words "not for kids," and the number for the Poison Center.

Prescription drug prices continue to climb, putting the pinch on consumers. Some older Americans appear to be seeking an alternative to mainstream medicines that has become easier to get legally in many parts of the country. Just ask Cheech and Chong.

Marijuana is legal in Colorado — as long as you're 21 or older. It's still illegal for kids to possess, so juveniles are coming to dominate the marijuana arrests in Colorado. But another startling trend also has developed: Arrest rates have risen dramatically for young blacks and Latinos.

Ricky Montoya isn't surprised that's happening. He's standing outside Courtroom 4F in Denver's City and County Building, where he was just ordered to pay a $1,000 fine for his third marijuana possession offense.

The end is near for a veteran-owned medical marijuana dispensary in downtown Olympia. It’s a casualty of the state merging recreational and medical marijuana.

A marijuana collective on Aurora Avenue North, where there are several medical marijuana dispensaries within a few blocks. The deadline for medical marijuana storefronts to meet state regulations is July 1.
Google Maps

Along certain stretches of highway in Washington state are green crosses painted on a white background.

These crosses signal a medical marijuana dispensary nearby.

Marijuana plants growing at Seattle's first legal pot farm, Sea of Green.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

The Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board is taking steps to address high levels of pesticides found in some legal marijuana samples. But the agency does not currently require testing for pesticides. Growers say for now, it’s up to consumers to seek that information.

Marijuana cultivation is estimated to use one percent of America’s electricity output. That’s enough juice to power 1.7 million average homes.

And as more states make the drug legal in some form, that power consumption is expected to soar. Northwest energy officials project cannabis grows will suck up three percent of the region’s power by 2035.

Now, efforts are underway to get growers to reduce their energy use.

John Kagia cuts right to the chase.

“Indoor cannabis cultivation is extraordinarily energy intensive," he flatly states.

A University of Washington study concluded about 30 football fields worth of marijuana are needed to serve the medical marijuana market in Washington. That translates to about two million square feet of canopy.

Currently, more than 12 million square feet are approved for production.

'Week in Review' panel Ross Reynolds, Claudia Balducci, Joni Balter and Rob McKenna.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Will the city come to a standstill with the viaduct closed? That isn't the only transportation story this week, we're also talking about Sound Transit 3.  And can you win an election without big donations? Why aren't more people furious about Troy Kelley? Plus, a round up of this week in pot. 

Ross Reynolds talks the week's news with former Attorney General Rob McKenna, Seattle Channel's Joni Balter and King County Councilmember Claudia Balducci. 

Employees at Ike's Pot Shop in Seattle's Central District sell marijuana products on their opening day, Sept. 30, 2014.
KUOW Photo/Posey Gruener

When writer David Schmader was approached to write a book about marijuana, he laid down these rules: No cartoon pot leaves, no stoner puns and no forwards by Tommy Chong.

Taxes from marijuana sales continue to outpace expectations in Oregon. The state Department of Revenue Wednesday said the state has collected nearly $7 million in pot taxes so far this year.

Public opinion on marijuana has risen dramatically over the last couple of decades. In the mid-1990s, only around 25 percent of Americans thought pot should be legal, according to Gallup.

Today, it's around 58 percent.

Voters in two Oregon counties will decide in the May primary whether to allow marijuana-related businesses. County commissioners banned marijuana retailers and growers in unincorporated parts of Klamath and Grant counties last year.

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