For a while now, we are bombarded with the of various environmental mishaps and the trail of destruction left in their wake. In July 2019, an oil well run by Indonesian state-owned oil and gas company Pertamina leaked crude oil into the Java Sea. This carried on for nearly three weeks killing surrounding sea life and polluting the coastline along with it.
Environmental pollution could originate from natural disasters or from human activity just like the 2019 Pertamina oil spill. Whatever the cause, we are left with the terrible aftermath and the need to clean and reclaim our contaminated land is more imperative.
Mostly in the past and even in recent times, soil remediation was majorly done by chemical means which is expensive and invasive. Chemical remediation works by converting heavy chemicals in the soil into different chemical forms which plant roots take up. The absorbed chemical will eventually spread through the whole plant which will then pass on to any animal that consumes the plant.
The toxic pollutants leave the soil, enters into the plant and animal and the metals are cycled through our ecosystem until it gets to us. A better way of tackling pollutants should be a method that removes the heavy chemicals from the eco cycle completely.
Scientists are now turning towards phytoremediation as a solution. Phytoremediation is the growing of plants especially fiber crops to degrade, reduce or remove soil contaminants. Here we look at how hemp can be deployed in healing the soil instead of cycling the problem.
Why Use Hemp?
Industrial hemp has relatively long roots whose length span about 1.5 – 3 ft. These roots are able to go fairly deep into the soil to absorb toxic chemicals. Hemp could also absorb a significant amount of heavy metals. It achieves this by storing them in its tissues, leaves and in the whole body. Another advantage of using hemp is that the harvested toxic-rich hemp, though not fit for consumption can be distilled into ethanol to be used as a biofuel.
Proven Cases of Hemp’s Phyto-Remediation Properties
Hemp to Soak Up Dangerous Heavy Chemicals
Cadmium (Cd) left in the soil will make its way into our food chain until it eventually gets to us. The presence of this metal in the body can lead to excruciating spine and joint pain. Over time, it has been linked to some forms of cancer and kidney problem.
In September 2012, five researchers from China released a paper where they documented their findings. Their research showed how hemp was successfully used to absorb Cadmium from the soil.
The scientists grew eighteen varieties of hemp native to China on polluted soils. They found only 7 of the varieties contain the highest amount of Cadmium.
Their conclusion was that those seven cultivars are thus good candidates in decontaminating Cd-contaminated soils.
Zinc is one of the heavy metals in the soil. In trace amounts, it is beneficial but in high concentrations, it is potentially phytotoxic. Another Chinese study in 2010 experimented with eight crops, including hemp to determine their capacity to absorb Zinc.
They reported that hemp along with other crops they tested except sunflower thrived moderately well under a concentration of 400 – 800 mg/kg. Hemp especially displayed little inhibitions in growth which indicates high zinc tolerance.
Plant and Soil in 2003 published a study carried out in Italy that demonstrates that hemp is indeed a phytoremediator. Hemp was used to cull cadmium, nickel, and chromium from the soil. Another discovery from the research showed that the morphology of the hemp plant is unaffected by high concentrations of heavy metals.
There was a noticeable increase in DNA content and phytochelatin as the hemp plants grow which suggested a knack to avoid cell damage by triggering different molecular mechanisms.
A German study in 2005 published in Biologia Plantarum also confirmed the observations of the Italian study. They discovered that cadmium concentrations as high as 800 mg/kg has no effect whatsoever on the hemp root.
On the other hand, concentrations of 50 – 100mg/kg in the leaf and stem had a strong effect on the vitality and viability of the plant. The study also found out that the rate of cadmium uptake is affected by a soil’s PH.
Hemp and the Chernobyl Nuclear Waste
The most well-known use of hemp in cleaning up radioactive deposits was in Chernobyl, Ukraine. In April 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant exploded, discharging tons of radiation over 100,000 square kilometers of Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus.
In 1998, a company called Phytotech started planting industrial hemp in the contaminated fields around Chernobyl. The experiment was a tremendous success and it marked the first successful use of hemp in soil remediation. Hemp’s phytoremediation properties finally caught public attention.
Hemp’s Phytoremediation properties put to test in Italy’s Puglia region
In over 20 years of operation, Italy’s Ilva steel plant (the biggest of its kind in Europe) continually emitted toxic substances poisoning the local animals, soil and plants. The toxicity of the environment led to the prohibition of livestock grazing within a 20-kilometer radius of the plant.
In 2012, farmers in the region began to grow industrial hemp in an attempt to decontaminate their polluted soils. The harvest is then converted into fiber for construction and clothing in a hemp processing plant.
Hemp’s Potential in Cleaning up Oil Spill
Harmful chemicals like Corexit for lack of a better option are used to clean up oil spills. Scientists and governments are now considering phytoremediation as a more environmentally friendly and effective alternative to Corexit. The United States Navy conducted an experiment using a plant in the hibiscus family, Kenaf to soak up spilled oil.
They chose Kenaf because of its absorbent and fibrous core and the plant succeeded in soaking up the spillage during the experiment. Kenaf’s fibrous root is similar to that of hemp so hemp is presumed to have the same absorbent features.
There has been no proven experiment with hemp because of the U.S. war on drugs. The clampdown inflates the price of hemp and limits those who grow or conduct research with hemp.
As many governments begin to relax their strict policies on hemp, several people are beginning to explore and discover the vast potential of hemp.
Hemp has given hope to farmers and other landowners particularly in contaminated or “dead” zones. They now have the means to repair their land and earn an income at the same time.
Unlocking the Potential: African Cannabis Strains Redefining the Market
Africa, a continent celebrated for its rich history, diverse cultures, and breathtaking landscapes, is now carving its niche in the ever-evolving world of cannabis. With a significant shift in global attitudes towards marijuana, Africa emerges as a potent contender. Whether you seek recreational enjoyment or medicinal relief, African cannabis strains promise an exhilarating journey. They stand out as unique, exceptional, and potent options in the marijuana market. In this article, we’ll delve into the captivating world of some extraordinary African cannabis strains.
Kilimanjaro: Rejuvenating Sativa from Tanzania
Kilimanjaro, a sativa-dominant strain originating in Tanzania near the iconic Mount Kilimanjaro, offers a distinctive experience. This strain boasts a unique floral aroma with a sweet and spicy flavour profile complemented by hints of citrus. Kilimanjaro is celebrated for its invigorating effects that lead to a clear-headed high, making it an ideal choice for activities requiring productivity, creativity, and social engagement.
Red Congolese: The Euphoria from the Democratic Republic of Congo
Hailing from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Red Congolese is a sativa-dominant strain with a flavor profile that’s sweet and fruity, accompanied by an aroma reminiscent of citrus and spice. It is highly sought after for its energizing and euphoric effects, which are known to help combat stress and depression. This strain has gained global popularity for its ability to uplift mood, stimulate creativity, and enhance focus.
Malawi Gold: The Legendary Sativa from Malawi
Malawi Gold, also known as “Chamba,” is a legendary sativa strain emerging from the southeast African nation of Malawi, where it has been cultivated for generations. This strain features a distinct sweet, earthy, and spicy aroma with a citrusy flavour that offers an energetic, uplifting high. Malawi Gold is cherished as a favourite among seasoned cannabis enthusiasts, who consider it an excellent choice for daytime use, sparking creativity and enhancing focus.
Ethiopian: A Cultural and Medicinal Heritage
Ethiopian is a third-generation African sativa strain that holds an integral place in the cultural and agricultural heritage of Ethiopia. It boasts an aroma that is earthy and woodsy, releasing a jolting burst of euphoria. This strain has garnered attention for its potential medicinal properties and represents a valuable genetic resource for cannabis enthusiasts.
Rooibaard: The Lesotho Indica with a Balance
Rooibaard, also known as “Redbeard,” is an indica-dominant strain originating from Lesotho, a small landlocked country within South Africa. This strain possesses an earthy, spicy aroma with subtle undertones of fruit and pine. Known for delivering a balanced combination of relaxation and mental clarity, Rooibaard is a favourite among those seeking relief from pain and insomnia.
Durban Poison: The South African Pure Sativa
Durban Poison is a pure sativa strain native to South Africa, ideal for outdoor cultivation due to its resistance to pests and mold. It features a distinct sweet, spicy, earthy aroma with a citrusy flavour. This strain is popular for its cerebral high and its ability to alleviate stress, depression, and fatigue, making it a preferred choice for daytime use among both recreational and medicinal users.
As the global cannabis industry continues to evolve, with more countries embracing legalization, it’s imperative to explore the unique cannabis heritage that Africa offers. The strains discussed in this article are just a glimpse into the treasure trove of diverse African cannabis genetics. They signify the continent’s growing influence and contribution to the world of cannabis, enriching the experiences of cannabis enthusiasts around the globe.
Herb: Explore the Superb Collection of Cannabis Products
Herb is one of the top-notch cannabis brands in the USA and is transforming the way cannabis products are seen. The debate surrounding cannabis is endless, yet herb has become one of the major benefactors of CBD products in the USA. With its natural, efficient, and environment friendly collection of cannabis products, it can be named “the paradises of cannabis”.
From original cannabis flowers to CBD capsules, the firm provides all sorts of cannabis products. Even the recipes available on their site are scrumptious enough to make your meals special and rejuvenating.
So, how did this paradise of CBD came to existence? Let’s dive into its past:
Founded in 2014 by Matt Gray, Herb is all about eradicating the speculation surrounding cannabis. Back then it was impossible to find any cannabis recipe other than weed brownie. Being a cannabis fan, Matt began his search for new recipes.
The work started in his garage. In the beginning, it was just a place for finding great recipes, but people wanted more. Consumers often complained about not getting the right ingredients to complete the recipes. To meet the demand Matt established “Herb” and within a few years, it was the favorite destination of cannabis lovers.
Matt believed that cannabis was sinking under the cultural and historical disbelief, and it was time people start benefiting from it. He believes that cannabis can change a million lives with its therapeutic nature.
Herb has helped put the scare behind cannabis to the ground and simplified the process of finding the right product. With more than 14 million consumers, the company is putting the myths associated with Cannabis to bed. The very proof of the fact is – the 265 million viewers available for their videos. Right now, the company is aiming to provide cannabis anywhere in the world within 15 minutes.
Looking for Cannabis induced supplements and pills to put an end to your daily woes? One of the best places to get 100% natural and tested cannabis product is herb.co. The website opens with a beautiful quote “Herb is Cannabis for You, near you.” Roll down to see a variety of cannabis products including CBD oil, THC Oil Sativa drops CBD capsules, pre-rolls, vape pens, and even fresh cannabis flowers.
Rest assured the company provides only naturally grown and environment-friendly cannabis products. Obtain it in any form and you won’t have to worry about its efficiency and originality.
Such vast array of CBD products have helped meet consumers’ demand. One can also get regular updates about cannabis and the laws related to it right at the websites. The information mentioned there has been helping people understand the existing laws and their particular rights.
The Other Face of Cannabis
The cannabis plant is not just confined to marijuana which is rich in THC chemical compound that gives you the psychoactive “high” feelings. There is another breed of this plant which is known as hemp. There are numerous varieties of chemical compounds present in the cannabis plant most of which are still undiscovered. However, the chemical compound CBD is proved to be beneficial in many aspects in recent years. Hemp is rich in CBD and contains less than 0.3% THC. CBD does not give your brain the psychoactive rush at all. And so, this area, grabs researchers’ attention the most and has also opened booming opportunities for using hemp in various products such as makeup, food supplements and even medicine.
Hemp in Makeup.
Our prime object of discussion today is using hemp in makeup products. Yes, it has been legalized to make industrialized use of cannabis plants in the hemp form in the majority of states. Its use in cosmetics has lesser restrictions in most countries than that of restriction on hemp or CBD infused products in foods or supplements or medicines.
Not only has the use of hemp in cosmetics become legalized but it has also become fan-favorite of many consumers making the emergence of hemp-line cosmetic industries more widespread by the day. Popular brands such as NYX and Body Shop has launched hemp-infused beauty products and is continuing to expand in doing so.
The reason for hemp cosmetics is becoming so popular is because of its evident benefits. It has been clinically proved for hemp to be rich in vitamins A and C and E. The hemp seed oils are also enriched balanced and high essential fatty acid oils that are soothing to the skin with skin rejuvenating properties. That is why this particular extract is increasingly being used in lotions, body washes, lip balms, shampoos, conditioners and even in massage oils. The oil also contains the rare gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) which can be used in sunscreen for its effective UV protection properties. It is also rich in amino acid and multiple antioxidant components. As a result, hemp-based products work excellently for people with sensitive skin. It also acts as an effective skin-soothing component against burns, itches, rashes or allergies.
Hemp seed oils have also become popular for being used in makeup products such as lipstick, mascara, highlighters, etc. it has grabbed considerable consumer attention firstly because of its newness and secondly because of the benefits imposed by it on the skin making you look both pretty and taking care of your skin at the same time.
It is however a common misconception held by many on the ethics regarding usage of cannabis-infused makeup and beauty products. But the more scientific research is made on this, the more logics are being made against such ethical misconceptions. Hence, these products are being made and used increasingly in the market.
Top ten beauty lines to use hemp in beauty products.
Congress is many countries that have passed a bill on the legalization of industrial hemp production that is high in CBD and has significantly low THC content. At the same time, the restriction on hemp-infused products is more lenient when it comes to cosmetics. And so, within the US alone there has been the establishment of companies such as Dr. Bronner’s, Hippie Butter, Skinvisible Pharmaceuticals, CannaSkin, etc. the aforementioned companies manufacture products that are sole of the cannabis-line including makeup products as well as skincare ones. They are becoming signature products with time because of clinically proved benefits that have also been ensured by consumers.
Other existing companies such as L’oreal, Body Shop, Lush and NYX also introduced cannabis-infused products.
Lush introduced an organic hair treatment formula infused with hemp oil. Maison Margiela made a unique toilette that has the essence of cannabis in it. Milk Makeup brought a revolutionary Kush High Volume Mascara that is derived from hemp seed oil which is reputed to boost your eyelashes and also improve the growth of your lashes while ensuring you have the perfect fresh eye look. This product has become so popular that many would use this new product over their regularly used ones. Body Shop has brought about its best-selling hand cream with antibacterial properties because of the hemp oil essence in it. This product is sold every nine seconds around the globe. Body Shop also launched other hemp-infused products such as essential oils, masks, face cream, etc. Popular beauty lines such as NYX launched separate hemp-infused product lines which consist of a face primer, lip balm, etc. the hemp-infused roll-on highlighter by Kaja has also become a popular product.
Due to legalization issues, such products are not widely available everywhere. However, these products have gained significant popularity in the states in which their use is legalized. The fact that such products are available in Sephora pretty much explains its validation. Even though medical use and benefits of CBD are still in question because of its possible side effects, such factors are out of the question when it comes to beauty products.