Pubdate: Fri, 09 Mar 2001
Source: Union, The (CA)
Copyright: 2001 Nevada County Publishing, Inc.
Contact:  Letters to the Editor, 11464 Sutton Way, Grass Valley, CA, 95945
Fax: (530) 477-4292
Author: Beth Moore Haines


I strongly urge you to support a new bill, AB 448, which reintroduces 
industrial hemp production in California. We have many timber issues 
facing our Sierra Nevada region. This seems a logical way to provide 
for abundant tree-free resources to reduce the strain on our 
embattled forests, with no net job losses. Hemp production would 
preserve and create agricultural and manufacturing jobs. It can be 
manufactured into a myriad of useful products and is easily farmed in 
high density on even marginal soils and slopes. Even the waste 
products are efficiently used as biomass for cogeneration energy 
production, something California now desperately needs.

Hemp is successfully produced across Europe and Canada. It seems a 
shame that we continue to declare illegal a harmless and useful 
product that we then must import from other, more foresightful 
nations. Our businesses must compete in the global market against 
foreign companies with no restrictions on hemp production, 
manufacture and sales. They profit from us, due to our archaic laws 
based on 1930s-era corporate-manufactured propaganda.

That propaganda was created to ensure success of the new tree-pulp 
paper process, which Dupont and Hearst had just patented. They 
eliminated the only competition, hemp, by publishing false 
drug-hysteria-laden news releases in Hearst's newspapers. These fake 
articles were then submitted as the actual main evidence in 
congressional hearings to ban hemp! It has been banned here for the 
seven decades since.

Our state continues to face critical problems in employment, 
sustainable forestry and energy production. Hemp production offers 
cost-effective, plentiful solutions to address these and other 
issues. The bill to reintroduce Industrial Hemp production in 
California, AB 448, may be considered again by the California 
Assembly on March 23. I urge you to give your fullest support to the 
passage of this bill. Please contact our Assembly member Aanestad and 
ask him to support AB448.

Beth Moore Haines

Chicago Park
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