Outdoor vs. Indoor
While almost no one in the community is thrilled by the direction taken by local marijuana agribusiness, a false distinction has been raised in the past few years in certain segments of our community in favor of the virtues of outdoor cultivation versus indoor cultivation. By and large, the indoor operations have rightfully gained a reputation as diesel spewing, rental wreckin’ monstrosities. The recent full page North Coast Journal ad opposing indoor growing on the grounds of its enormous carbon footprint was completely on point. No one wants another Hacker Creek.
One of the results of the pervasive exposure of indoor scene’s downside has been the instillation of a heavenly glow around those who continue to farm outdoors. The informal group known as “Put ‘em in the Sun” is the visible part of this shift in the county’s culture, one that I heartily endorse. But this has led to a curious sentiment in the county’s general population: outdoor good, indoor bad.
But this attitude is simply not based on the facts. The only distinction between the two cultivation methods is that the vagaries of indoor cultivation have become clearly visible in the county’s population centers on a day-to-day basis, not hidden in the rural hinterlands. When a house burns down, we all draw collective breath and wonder about the soundness of the wiring in that stinky house(s) down the street. While on the surface outdoor cultivation seems to be a better system with a smaller footprint, this is only because the damage was conveniently tucked where it couldn’t be seen and we could all pretend that marijuana agribusiness couldn’t be just as explotative and damaging as cut-and-run logging.