To date 2007 has certainly been an exciting and
eventful year for hemp. We have made good progress
on the state level, and things seem to be heating up
even earlier than usual on the national level with the
2008 elections on the horizon and fast approaching.
Vote Hemp will be conducting our candidate surveys
again and preparing our Voter Guide for you to
consider when choosing our country's next leaders.
Stay tuned for more on that later.
In the meantime, please consider joining the Heat Is On
campaign to make
global warming a presidential priority and
pressure the presidential candidates to nail down
their support for industrial hemp, a carbon
sink that can trap greenhouse gases in the
buildings constructed out of it. (Click
here for more information on
carbon-negative hemp construction.)
So far, we
know that Sen. Barak
Obama voted for industrial hemp in the
Illinois legislature, Reps. Dennis Kucinich
and Ron Paul are sponsors of federal hemp
legislation (H.R. 1009),
and former Sen. John Edwards and current New
Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson support
industrial hemp research.
Where do the other
candidates stand? We'll certainly find out soon
enough, and our sense is that hemp will garner more
support than it ever has before.
Thanks for your continued interest, involvement and
|Hemp Bills Make Progress in 11 States
This year, eleven states
have looked at
whether farmers should have the right to grow
industrial hemp, a profitable and sustainable
crop that can be used for food, clothing, paper,
body care, bio-fuel and even auto parts. This is
the greatest number of states to take action
on hemp since 2001 when a record sixteen state
legislatures tackled the issue.
Of the eleven states, two have passed hemp
bills (New Mexico and North Dakota), two have
rejected hemp bills (Idaho and New
Hampshire), two are on track to pass hemp
bills (California and Wisconsin),
and five have hemp bills that will be taken
up again in 2008 (Hawaii, Minnesota, Oregon,
South Carolina and Vermont).
|Greatest Victories So Far in 2007
The greatest hemp victories of the 2007
legislative season so far have been South
Carolina becoming the 28th state to introduce
hemp legislation, New
Mexico becoming the
15th state to pass hemp legislation, the
addition of another Republican co-author,
Anthony Adams, to California's
hemp bill, and North Dakota's decision to
license farmers to grow industrial hemp with
or without DEA approval.
|Hemp Lawsuit in North Dakota
North Dakota's action paves the way for
farmers to assert their right to farm
industrial hemp without federal interference.
The Vote Hemp legal team is currently working
with North Dakota farmers and state officials
to put together a viable lawsuit.
support our efforts by making a contribution today to
Hemp Farmer Legal Support Fund.
Through the North Dakota lawsuit and other legal and
legislative actions, we hope to
win the right to farm industrial hemp without
federal interference. Then, state by state,
markets for industrial hemp grow, we can
gradually restore the crop to its rightful
place in the U.S. agricultural economy.
|Congress Should Vote Hemp in the Farm Bill
The shortest path to nationwide industrial
hemp farming is to get Congress to remove the
confusion and related barriers that exist at the federal
Congressman and Republican presidential
candidate Ron Paul broke the ice by
1009, the Industrial Hemp
Farming Act of 2007.
Unfortunately the realilty is that stand-alone bills like
rarely succeed unless they are incorporated
into larger "must-pass" bills. The obvious
choice for industrial hemp is the 2007 Farm
Bill, legislation that will provide hundreds
of billions of dollars in support to farmers
the priorities for U.S. agriculture over the
next five years.
The Farm Bill Should Support Hemp
At Farm Bill hearings earlier
this month before the Senate Agriculture
Committee, it was noted that
industrial hemp could be a feedstock for the
production of bio-based nanocomposite
materials that could substitute for
fiberglass and petroleum-based composites.
Industrial hemp should be included in the
research on this technology that is currently
being conducted with Farm Bill funding under
the USDA Cooperative State Research,
Education and Extension Service.
The Farm Bill Should Encourage Hemp
Industrial hemp meets the definition of
a "bioenergy crop" under S. 1403, the Farm-to-Fuel
Investment Act of 2007, a Farm Bill Energy
Title marker bill introduced earlier this
month by Senators Klobuchar (D-MN), Harkin
(D-IA), Conrad (D-ND) and Durbin (D-IL).
The production of industrial hemp, as "an
annual plant that can be used as feedstock
for bioenergy production and is grown in a
resource-conserving crop rotation," should be
supported by the $350 million in resources
the act would provide.
The Farm Bill Should Recognize Hemp Farming
Converting working land to sustainable industrial
production should qualify farmers for the
Conservation Security Program, a voluntary
green-payments program that offers financial
rewards to farmers who are able to control
erosion and fertilizer run-off, reduce
pesticide use, protect wildlife habitats and
conserve energy and water.
Environmentally-friendly industrial hemp
production is a shining example of the
sustainable farming and renewable energy practices
Farm Bill could encourage in U.S. agriculture.
So, why doesn't the Farm Bill include a
provision on industrial hemp? Please write
your Representative and Senators urging them
to support the inclusion of industrial hemp
in the Conservation and Energy Titles of the
2007 Farm Bill.
Current Action Alerts
Take action now...
Click here to send a letter urging your
U.S. Representative to co-sponsor H.R.
1009, the "Industrial Hemp Farming Act of
here to send a letter to your Senators
and U.S. Representative urging them to advocate for
inclusion of industrial hemp in the 2007 Farm
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