By February 15, 2014 7 Comments Read More →

Did the Government Give Industrial Hemp a Pass to Clean Up Radiation in the State?

Hemp has a broad climate range and has been cultivated successfully from as far north as Iceland to warmer, more tropical regions. Flickr: Gregory Jordan

Hemp has a broad climate range and has been cultivated successfully from as far north as Iceland to warmer, more tropical regions. Flickr: Gregory Jordan

Christina Sarich, Staff Writer
Waking Times

Activists have been shouting they want an end to GMO foods for more than a decade now, and Cannabis Sattiva L. supporters have been at it for even longer, so why has the US government finally given farmers the right to legally grow industrial hemp, the non-hallucinatory, sister plant of medical marijuana?

It is safe to say that industrialized hemp should have been legalized years ago. With THC levels so low, you would have to smoke more of it than Snoop Dogg to get ‘high’ – and that’s a lot of Cannabis, it is ridiculous that it was classified as a drug at all. It has numerous uses and could replace many crops that require heavy irrigation and pesticides, like cotton, for example. Here’s the most interesting fact though – hemp plants ‘eat’ radiation.

When the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant Reactor 4 accident caused severe radioactive contamination in 1986, families within a 30-kilometer area of the site had to be evacuated. Radioactive contamination was later found at 100 kilometers from the accident site, and Fukushima radiation levels are still to be determined, with the Japanese government planning on dumping their overflowing radiated water tanks into the Pacific as we speak.As with the Chernobyl incident, scientists are finding radioactive emissions and toxic metals–including iodine, cesium-137, strontium-90, and plutonium–concentrated in the soil, plants, and animals of Japan, but also now throughout the United States and all along the West Coast – from Canada to Mexico. Even the EPA has admittedthat any living tissue can be affected by radiation exposure. High levels of thyroid disease and cancer have been reported in Japan, and our ocean is dying by the day. Scientists are also expecting that children born on the US West Coast will suffer a 28% higher incident of hyperthyroidism – a disease that accompanies radiation exposure. Even the livestock that grazed on irradiated grasses grown in contaminated soils developed meat with high concentrations of these unwanted toxins after Chernobyl, and Fukushima is exponentially worse.

Is Hemp Our Redeemer?

Dr. Ilya Raskin of Rutgers University’s Biotechnology Center for Agriculture and the Environment, who was a member of the original task force sent by the IAEA to examine food safety at the Chernobyl site figured out that through phytoremediation utilizing hemp, among other plants, the soil, and thus the food supply could be saved from toxicity.

Phytoremediation is the process whereby green plants remove toxins from the soil. Plants can extract specific elements within their ecosystem and still thrive. They accumulate the toxins in their tissues and root systems but remain undamaged. Sunflowers have been known to do something similar for centuries, eliminating heavy metals and pesticides from damaged soil. Two members of the mustard family are also useful for this process – Brassica juncea and Brassica carinata, but it seems hemp is quite amazing at sucking up radiation.

Granted, the government is probably dumbfounded at what to do with the Fukushima radiation headed our way, but the legalization of hemp just might balance some of the toxicity scientists expect.  Fortunately, California, one of the states that will be hardest hit, has already legalized industrial hemp, but it has to wait for the federal government to give states the right before they can actually grow it. The Farm Bill only allows ‘research’ growth at certain institutions in 10 states currently.

George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew hemp. In light of Fukushima, let’s join our countries’ founders to grow it too. You can help clean the soil in your area if hemp or medical marijuana has been legalized in your state, and help it to pass in further states by being vocal with your state and federal representatives.

About the Author

Christina Sarich is a musician, yogi, humanitarian and freelance writer who channels many hours of studying Lao TzuParamahansa YoganandaRob Brezny,  Miles Davis, and Tom Robbins into interesting tidbits to help you Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World. Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing the Body And Mind Through the Art of Yoga.

**This article was originally featured at Nation Of Change.**

This article is offered under Creative Commons license. It’s okay to republish it anywhere as long as attribution bio is included and all links remain intact.

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  • Mark I

    Ford built a car out of hemp in the early 20th century. We could build well insulated nuclear energy structures from the hemp and lock the heavy metals into areas already designed to deal with toxic chemicals and heavy metals.

  • zeolite

    Miracle herb! It does so much. It’s also a complete protein, for those natural bodybuilders like me! It has strong fibers and anti-cancer properties too. I’m so glad that it can help against radiation too!

  • traci

    it would be great for hemp production to take us back before “reefer madness” and the false propaganda to make it illegal so the petroleum criminals could poison us and allow the people to pay them to do it.

    the american constitution was written on hemp paper, as were sails for ships and the seeds are very nutritious and have been used as an herbal remedy for a long time. since i am bringing up the constitution; please get your facts straight. california does not have to wait for the federal governments approval to do anything, neither does any state. read the constitution; specifically the 10th amendment to start with.

    the federal government has absolutely no power over the people or the states. it has taken power unlawfully and illegally over the years due to the people’s refusal to defend their republic against all enemies domestic or foreign or to inform themselves and follow through with their responsibilities as american citizens, thus reducing them to second class u s citizens. the subversion of rights into priveledges has created a vast network of racketeering and extortion schemes and the people are actually paying to keep themselves enslaved through these unconstitutional laws and statutes.

    in case you are wondering, yes, the remedy for this is already in the constitution and you can do something about it. the constitution is the supreme law of the land and anyone that subverts it has committed treason. any law that is not compatible with the constitution is null void and without effect. go to citizens of the american constitution to find out more information if you would like to be an american citizen instead of chattal.

    • Anonymous


  • dale ruff

    Sounds great. What happens to the plants which absorb the toxins?
    It has to go somewhere. If the plants remove it from the soil, where else but back into the soil (or atmosphere if burned?) will the toxins go?

  • gabriel


  • L. from Quebec

    Hemp can also be used for clothing and making oil. Not just to be smoked.

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