A new report is showing that hemp cultivation can be a strong factor in the fight against climate change.
Darshil Shah, a senior researcher at the Centre for Natural Material Innovation at Cambridge, England, school, said “numerous studies” have found that hemp is “one of the best” converters of carbon dioxide.
While forests capture 2 to 6 tons of carbon per hectare (depending on a number of other factors like region and types of tree), “Industrial hemp absorbs between 8 to 15 tons of CO2 per hectare (3 to 6 tons per acre) of cultivation.” This makes hemp around twice as effective at capturing carbon compared to a full blown forest.
In fact, not only is hemp better than forestry at grabbing carbon dioxide out of the air, it is also better than any known commercial crop. It truly is the ideal “carbon sink”, which is basically any mechanism or environment that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Plus, once the carbon dioxide bonds to hemp fibers, it sticks and doesn’t go anywhere. That means these fibers can be used for construction and textiles without the repercussions of releasing more emissions. This means we can turn hemp into vehicles, homes, cars, and t-shirts without worrying about continuing this uptick in carbon emissions.