Sacramento County Declares Excess MJ Cultivation ‘Water Waste’

In light of California’s unrelenting drought, Sacramento County voted Tuesday to declare water use designated for marijuana cultivation a form of water waste.

The County Supervisors voted unanimously for Supervisor Roberta MacGlashan’s move to revise the water code to limit indoor cultivation. The board had revised the water code last year to prohibit any outdoor cultivation.

“According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, a single marijuana plant uses an average of six gallons of water per day during the growing cycle,” said MacGlashan.

The new rule will take effect in 30 days. Indoor cultivation of more than the legal limit of 9 marijuana plants will be considered a water waste violation, punishable by a fine of up to $500 per day. Ted Wolter, chief of staff for MacGlashan, stated that “it just seemed like a rational and logical extension that if it’s illegal to grow it, it should be illegal to use the water to grow it.”

In a grow-op bust last week, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department took about 1,000 plants. The operation was using more than 6,000 gallons of water per day, the equivalent of 30 households.


Photo Credit: Franco Folini

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