Cannabis Cultivation Policy Updated by State Water Board to Protect Waterways

Feb 11, 2019 at 10:00am

California Water News Daily

The evolving state Cannabis Cultivation Policy was further defined earlier this week when the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) voted to clarify implementation issues while ensuring growers continue to be environmentally responsible in both urban and rural grow sites throughout much of California. The initial policy was approved in October of 2017 in response to Proposition 215, the Compassionate Use Act, which established the medical cannabis industry, and Proposition 64 in 2016, which legalized recreational marijuana use for adults 21 and older in January 2018.

In spite of the new updates the main tenets of the Cannabis Cultivation Policy remain unchanged – to protect water flows and water quality in the state’s rivers and streams. The SWRCB has actively worked with the North Coast and Central Valley Regional Water Boards and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, since 2013 in advance of the voter-approved propositions to address the potentially harmful environmental impacts of cannabis cultivation.

Toward that end the SWRCB has approved the four following key updates:

- Onstream reservoirs

- Tribal buffers

- Winterization requirements

- Indoor cultivation site exemptions

Click here to view the full article.