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Illegal pot farms on public land create environmental hazard, expose deadly neurotoxins

By CHRISTOPHER WEBER LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two months after two men were arrested at an illicit marijuana farm on public land deep in the Northern California wilderness, authorities are assessing the environmental impact and cleanup costs at the site where trees were clear-cut, waterways were diverted, and the ground was littered with open containers of fertilizer and rodenticide. A group including U.S. Forest Service rangers, local law enforcement, scientists and conservationists hiked into the so-called trespass grow where nearly 9,000 cannabis plants were illegally cultivated on national forest land in the region known as the Emerald Triangle, for the marijuana that has been produced there for decades. Read the rest of this story on Times-Standard.com.

Northern California cannabis court case gives inspiration for a film

YOLO COUNTY — Paul Fullerton breathed a sigh of relief last month when drug charges against the Woodland business owner were expunged and his probation halted — a resolution more than three years in the making. Fullerton is a retired UC Davis fire captain who owns  “Li’l Shop of Growers” in Woodland and was convicted of selling cannabis illegally. At the time of his arrest in 2016 — after a controversial investigation — the charges against Fullerton were felony counts of illegal cultivation and possession for sale, along with possession of a firearm and an extended magazine. The gun-related charges were dropped after the arms were proven legit, but the cannabis charges stayed, even as laws changed, making illegal sales a misdemeanor, not a felony. Read the rest of this story on Times-Stand...

Cross-pollination between marijuana and hemp is a budding conflict at outdoor grows

Published: Nov 15, 2019, 6:26 am • Updated: Nov 15, 2019, 6:27 am By The Associated Press By Bart Schaneman, Marijuana Business Daily DENVER — Outdoor marijuana growers are reporting an increase in cross-pollination from hemp farms, a development that could mean marijuana cultivators might lose upwards of tens of thousands of dollars if their plants become unmarketable as flower products. As the marijuana and hemp industries increasingly share the same cultivation territory, the number of conflicts is likely to increase, particularly in areas with thriving outdoor cannabis cultivation. Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

Weedmaps makes good on pledge to drop rogue cannabis shops

IRVINE — Facing massive fines from state regulators, Irvine-based Weedmaps has taken major strides toward fulfilling its pledge to drop ads for illicit cannabis shops from its online directory, cutting about 2,700 rogue stores from its site since the start of this year. The company’s long-awaited move to follow state law is drawing praise from legal cannabis operators. Some licensed stores have seen an uptick in business since Jan. 1, a trend they attribute to Weedmaps making it more difficult for potential customers to find unlicensed competitors. But Weedmaps’ new filtering system hasn’t prevented all unlicensed operators from advertising on the site, and many in the regulated market are hoping for even more diligent screening by the prominent, industry-driving platform. Read the rest of...