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51 CN ON: Editorial: Don't Delay Cannabis LawWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON)          Area:Ontario Lines:105 Added:12/27/2017

The most important social and legal change in Canada during 2018 will almost certainly be the legalization of marijuana. This move, the boldest by the Trudeau government so far, will end almost a century of prohibition of cannabis that has resulted in a great deal of misery while delivering few benefits in return.

The House of Commons has passed two laws that will make the consumption of marijuana legal while toughening the rules against abuse of the drug. The prime minister now says his goal is to put them into effect by "next summer."

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52Canada: Cannabiswise Program To Ease Consumer ConcernsWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:Givetash, Linda Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:12/27/2017

Certification initiative to test businesses for quality control, ethical production

Marijuana consumers are likely to have a flood of options when pot becomes legal next summer and now a not-for-profit group is stepping in to help determine which products to trust.

The National Institute for Cannabis Health and Education said its CannabisWise certification will test businesses on quality and safety guidelines, similar to the way other voluntary programs regulate pharmacy services or fish products in Canada.

The institute's CEO, Barinder Rasode, said they've heard concerns that Canadians are looking for clarity when it comes to buying quality marijuana that is sourced ethically and adhering to laws from all three levels of government.

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53 CN ON: The Populist Reformer Who Stood Alone In Supporting Pot BillWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Curry, Bill Area:Ontario Lines:112 Added:12/27/2017

Scott Reid stood alone on the Conservative benches as the House of Commons gave its final say on landmark legislation to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

Of the 74 Conservative MPs in attendance for the late November vote, he was the only one to support the bill. He was also the only MP in the Chamber who could say with some level of confidence that his vote represented the wish of his constituents.

Nearly 3,100 of Mr. Reid's constituents in the Eastern Ontario rural riding of Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston responded to a mail-in referendum on the bill, resulting in a narrow finding of 55-per-cent support. Mr. Reid voted accordingly.

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54CN SN: Interview: A Pot Of TroubleWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Regina Leader-Post (CN SN) Author:Cowan, Pamela Area:Saskatchewan Lines:Excerpt Added:12/27/2017

This past year has seen massive changes in Saskatchewan's health care landscape. Postmedia reporter Pamela Cowan spoke with Health Minister Jim Reiter about the impact of some of those changes on residents now and in the future.

Q When marijuana is legalized in July, are you concerned about increased addiction or drugged driving in the province?

A There's been some work done in Justice, work done with the Crowns on the best way we can deal with it, but I'm very concerned about the safety aspect. … We're concerned about mental health and addictions right across the piece. It's a priority for us and it will continue to be a priority for us.

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55 CN NS: Individuals Charged In Marijuana Dispensaries Busts Back InWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Truro Daily News (CN NS)          Area:Nova Scotia Lines:36 Added:12/27/2017

Six people charged following police raids on marijuana dispensaries in Bible Hill in September are to appear in provincial court in January to enter pleas.

The six individuals were charged after RCMP officers made simultaneous busts at three medical marijuana dispensaries on Sept. 1.

Each person is charged with trafficking in marijuana and cannabis resin as well as with possessing marijuana and cannabis resin for the purpose of trafficking.

[Name redacted], 43, and [Name redacted], 30, of Lyman Street and [Name redacted], 32, of Shore Road, Clifton, are to return to court Jan. 17.

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56 CN ON: Officers Need PTSD ProgramsWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Kingston Whig-Standard (CN ON) Author:MacAlpine, Ian Area:Ontario Lines:149 Added:12/27/2017

Correctional officers union boss reflects on issues, progress in 2017

Jason Godin, national president of the Union of Canadian Correctional Officers, has overseen many changes in the union that represents more than 7,400 correctional service officers across Canada at federal institutions, including approximately 1,000 in the Kingston area.

Currently halfway through a third mandate as national president, Kingston-based Godin sat down with the Whig-Standard at the union offices in Kingston's west end to discuss issues for his members, which included the increasing amount of fentanyl coming into the institutions, recognizing correctional officers as first responders, post-traumatic stress disorder issues, the challenges with the beleaguered Phoenix pay system, and the settlement of a union contract that makes them the highest paid correctional officers in North America.

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57 CN ON: LTE: Deter Or Encourage?Wed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:London Free Press (CN ON) Author:Dow, E. R. Area:Ontario Lines:29 Added:12/27/2017

So-called experts want overdose prevention sites set up to protect druggies from themselves. Temporary and short-term they say; about as short-term as income tax, which was said to be a temporary measure.

Rather than deterring drug habit, it seems like it's being encouraged. Maybe the consequences should not be removed.

How many front-line medical personnel and how many precious health dollars are being eaten up, depriving more deserving and legitimate health sufferers timely and proper attention?

E. R. Dow



58 CN ON: PUB LTE: Wrong Weed ChoicesWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Ottawa Sun (CN ON) Author:Flanagan, Stephen Area:Ontario Lines:33 Added:12/27/2017

Chalk it up to a bunch of whacky weed decisions: The first was that Ottawa's finest decided to charge people working in pot shops. the second that the Crown actually wasted the public's money and the court's time with prosecuting these people and the third being the conditional discharges and suspended sentences handed down which should and will be wiped clean down the road.

Why on earth are authorities going through with this utter lunacy when they darn well know that this drug will be legal soon? The state has better things to do with their enforcement arms and the public purse.

Stephen Flanagan


(For now, the law's the law)


59 US CA: Federal Agents Can Still Seize Marijuana At CaliforniaWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA)          Area:California Lines:140 Added:12/27/2017

California legalizes marijuana for recreational use Monday, but that won't stop federal agents from seizing the drug -- even in tiny amounts -- on busy freeways and backcountry highways.

Marijuana possession still will be prohibited at eight Border Patrol checkpoints in California, a reminder that state and federal laws collide when it comes to pot. The U.S. government classifies marijuana as a controlled substance, like heroin and LSD.

"Prior to Jan. 1, it's going to be the same after Jan. 1, because nothing changed on our end," said Ryan Yamasaki, an assistant chief of the Border Patrol's San Diego sector. "If you're a federal law enforcement agency, you uphold federal laws."

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60 US CA: Editorial: The Lack Of Health Research Into Marijuana Makes ItWed, 27 Dec 2017
Source:Los Angeles Times (CA)          Area:California Lines:95 Added:12/27/2017

In advance of the legalization of recreational marijuana sales on Jan. 1, there have been lots of debates over the details of the cannabis business. How many feet should pot shops be from schools or daycare centers? How many acres may a marijuana farmer cultivate? Who should be eligible for a license to sell and who shouldn't?

But there's been much less discussion over an equally important question raised by the end of prohibition in California: What is the right public health message to send to adults who can now legally buy and use marijuana? Voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition 64 last year and polls continue to show broad support for legalization. But just because marijuana is legal doesn't mean it is risk-free.

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61US CA: Legal Pot In California Brings Host Of Environmental RulesTue, 26 Dec 2017
Source:Seattle Post-Intelligencer (WA) Author:Knickmeyer, Ellen Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:12/26/2017

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - At a state briefing on environmental rules that await growers entering California's soon-to-be-legal marijuana trade, organic farmers Ulysses Anthony, Tracy Sullivan and Adam Mernit listened intently, eager to make their humble cannabis plot a model of sustainable agriculture in a notoriously destructive industry dominated by the black market.

In line with a 2017 study that found marijuana grows are more damaging, plot for plot, than commercial logging in Northern California forests, Anthony said he has seen too many destructive grows. Trash-strewn clearings. Growers heaping fertilizer at the foot of a centuries-old sequoia tree, needlessly endangering it. Wild streams diverted for irrigation.

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62 CN ON: OPP Officers Use Naloxone, Save Life Of Overdosed ManTue, 26 Dec 2017
Source:Hamilton Spectator (CN ON)          Area:Ontario Lines:40 Added:12/26/2017

NORFOLK COUNTY - Ontario Provincial Police say officers used naloxone to save a man's life while transporting him to Hamilton's Barton Street jail.

Norfolk OPP credit "quick-thinking" officers for helping the 29-year-old man who appeared to have overdosed on opioids Friday afternoon.

They administered three doses of naloxone, which is used to revive people in medical distress after taking drugs such as fentanyl. The man regained consciousness and began to respond to officers. Paramedics transferred him to hospital.

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63 CN AB: Edmonton Opening Four Supervised Consumption SitesTue, 26 Dec 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Maimann, Kevin Area:Alberta Lines:67 Added:12/26/2017

Concern that sites will be clustered in the inner city

Just a few years ago, supervised consumption sites seemed like a pipe dream for public health advocates in Edmonton.

But the opioid crisis, highlighted by alarming rates of fentanyl overdose deaths, sparked a major shift in public opinion and policy.

In October, Health Canada officially gave the green light to five sites in Alberta, including four in Edmonton - all of which are scheduled to be up and running in early 2018.

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64 CN AB: Column: Competitive Cannabis Market Crucial To Combat BlackTue, 26 Dec 2017
Source:Sundre Round Up (CN AB) Author:Ducatel, Simon Area:Alberta Lines:100 Added:12/26/2017

Unreasonable retail prices will not drive people to buy legally

As Canadians prepare to celebrate the New Year, the country's provincial and federal governments continue to work on legalizing cannabis.

Provided everything comes together according to initial plans, the monumental policy failure that has for decades treated a health issue as a criminal one - otherwise known as prohibition - will finally be over this summer.

But a growing question looms as leaders attempt to legislate the substance.

At a proposed price point that does not even make the slightest attempt to compete seriously with rates available on the black market, will people actually be convinced to ditch their dealers and do business with legal, regulated retailers?

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65US CA: A Beginner's Guide To Buying Recreational Marijuana InTue, 26 Dec 2017
Source:Fresno Bee, The (CA) Author:Branan, Brad Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:12/26/2017

Cannabis 101: Here's what you need to know about recreational marijuana

With recreational marijuana becoming available for sale on New Year's Day, you may be asking yourself: Do I want to try this stuff?

If you have never used cannabis, or if it has been a long time since you have, you need to know that pot isn't just consumed through joints and bongs anymore. Consumers also use vape pens, edibles and other products.

And marijuana has higher amounts of THC -- pot's psychoactive ingredient -- than it once did. In the early 1990s, the average amount of THC in confiscated marijuana samples was roughly 3.7 percent, according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse. Now, many retail strains test in the high 20s and some even top 30 percent.

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66 CN NS: Column: Make No Mistake, Not All Polls Are Created EqualTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Truro Daily News (CN NS) Author:Wangersky, Russell Area:Nova Scotia Lines:90 Added:12/24/2017

They're great for entertainment purposes, but then again, so are fortune-tellers and horoscopes.

If you're looking at public opinion polls to predict things, well, there are wins and there are losses. And lately, more losses.

We've got to start looking at polling differently - because though some of the tools get better all the time, the results are not the gospel we pretend they are.

Two polls in the past week or so highlights that for me: a Toronto poll suggesting Doug Ford could be competitive in a race against Toronto Mayor John Tory, and a Corporate Research Associates poll about marijuana use in the Atlantic provinces.

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67 CN ON: LTE: Thumbs Down For Legalized PotWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Sun Times, The (Owen Sound, CN ON) Author:Eibisberger, Walter E. Area:Ontario Lines:72 Added:12/24/2017

During my life time, I have always taken politics with a grain of salt; I never took it too seriously as Canada's voting system gave me the opportunity to exercise my rights every four years with my personal vote to effect change.

Since Pierre Trudeau's time as prime minister of Canada, things have changed noticeably but not always for the better. For example, during the past decades, the Indigenous social issues have been kicked down the road like a tin can with no evidence of concrete changes for the people. Many [Indigenous people] continue to live on far northern inaccessible reserves with overall sub-standard living conditions, drinking water and sewage disposal challenges.

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68 CN NF: Editorial: CRA Poll Dashes Pot-Revenue High HopesWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Western Star, The (CN NF)          Area:Newfoundland Lines:68 Added:12/24/2017

A Corporate Research Associates (CRA) survey last week probably sent chills down the spines of finance ministers and premiers in Atlantic Canada. After they left Ottawa earlier in the week with a lucrative tax-sharing deal on the sale of legalized marijuana, their visions of windfall revenues were quickly dashed with a reality check.

The CRA survey suggests that 20 per cent of Atlantic Canadians plan to buy pot once it becomes legal July 1. It's about the same percentage that uses pot today - illegally.

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69CN QU: Plante, PM Discuss Pot Legalization, Public TransportWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Montreal Gazette (CN QU)          Area:Quebec Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

Mayor Valerie Plante said she had a 'very good' first meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, with the two discussing pot legalization and her Pink Line vision.

Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante declared she had a "very good" first meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday - an opportunity she used to discuss the imminent legalization of marijuana as well as public transit.

Speaking to reporters at city hall afterward, Plante said she was reassured by Trudeau's remarks on the legalization of marijuana, scheduled for July 1.

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70Canada: Half Of All Pot Users Shrug Off Driving RiskWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Forrest, Maura Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

OTTAWA - A new Health Canada survey shows that Canadians are hazy on the risks of driving high.

Only half of respondents who had consumed cannabis in the past year felt that marijuana use affects driving, according to the Canadian Cannabis Survey, released Tuesday, compared with 75 per cent of all respondents. Another 24 per cent said it depends, while 19 per cent said cannabis doesn't affect driving.

Of those who had used marijuana in the last 12 months, 39 per cent said they had driven within two hours of consuming cannabis at some point in their lives. Forty per cent of those said they had done it in the previous 30 days, and 15 per cent said they had driven after using cannabis in combination with alcohol. Only two per cent reported an interaction with police related to driving under the influence.

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71 CN NF: LTE: Mr. Trudeau, We're Just Not ReadyWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Northern Pen (CN NF) Author:Power, Keihan Area:Newfoundland Lines:84 Added:12/24/2017

During his election campaign, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to legalize marijuana if we chose him as our leader. That day is near, and marijuana might be legalized on Canada Day 2018. Such a decision should not be taken lightly. Our country is not ready for this change.

To clarify, I don't want to come across as cynical. I know that medical marijuana has its place in treating patients with chronic or terminal illness. I also don't agree with throwing people in jail for carrying small amounts for personal use. I see this as a waste of time, money and resources. At the same time, however, I don't think that the legalization of marijuana is what our country needs. And I certainly don't think it will make our country healthier, happier or safer. The decision to legalize marijuana has implications for health, society and our youth.

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72 CN NF: St. Anthony Mayor Weighs Pros And Cons Of Marijuana PlanWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Northern Pen (CN NF) Author:Roberts, Stephen Area:Newfoundland Lines:70 Added:12/24/2017

McDonald believes production facility should be located in rural area

St. Anthony Mayor Desmond McDonald believes the province's marijuana production facility should be located in a rural area.

He also sees opportunities for business with the province's plan to legalize marijuana.

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador announced on Dec. 8 that it has signed a deal to lock in a supply of cannabis and cannabis products from Canadian company Canopy Growth, ahead of the legalization of marijuana for recreational use in July 2018.

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73 CN AB: LTE: High WorkforceWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Calgary Sun, The (CN AB) Author:Soch, Mike Area:Alberta Lines:32 Added:12/24/2017

Everyone knows what use of marijuana does. Ability to focus changes for worst, ability to multi task changes for worst, performance and speed of work changes for worst. Willpower diminished and so on. So as a small-business owner (restaurant), now I will have to pay more for minimum wage, and actually might get less work done with someone with dumb grin on his face and a large appetite. How about the medical profession, medical labs and professions, where accuracy and attention to detail is crucial? And if someone decides to fire that particular employee, I can already imagine the labour board taking sides with that employee and filling lawsuit for wrongful dismissal. Thanks, Justin.

Mike Soch

(Why would you assume employees are going to get high for work? Do they currently get hammered?)


74 CN ON: LTE: Greed Or Need?Thu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Expositor, The (CN ON) Author:Morris, Alan Area:Ontario Lines:24 Added:12/24/2017

Governments raise a lot of revenue by taxing alcohol and tobacco. Now they are turning their sights on cannabis. A lot of young people think that using marijuana is a good thing. But, like any drug, cannabis can lead to addiction and ruin a person's life, all because our greedy government wants the tax money.

Alan Morris



75 CN AB: LTE: B.C. Knowledge Of Pot's Impact Is HazyThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Comeau, Larry Area:Alberta Lines:26 Added:12/24/2017

Billions of dollars have been spent by Canadian governments dissuading young people from taking up tobacco use, and it is finally having a positive effect. Therefore, now making an even more dangerous and addictive drug, legal, certainly will require public education aimed at parents and young children.

With studies in the U.K., U.S.A. and by the Canadian Medical Association all conclusively showing young people using cannabis run a greatly enhanced risk of suffering psychosis and other mental issues later in life, education should have preceded legalization.

Larry Comeau, Ottawa


76 CN AB: LTE: There Are Risks To Consuming PotThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:McColl, Pamela Area:Alberta Lines:36 Added:12/24/2017

Re: "Irksome issues around cannabis legalization," Licia Corbella, Opinion, Dec. 16.

Canadians need to be surveyed on far more marijuana harms than just the risk of driving marijuana impaired. Health Canada has identified conditions for which the use of marijuana is strictly contraindicated.

Our country's health watchdog advises men to avoid the use of marijuana if they want to start a family.

How many Canadians understand the science that links marijuana to a heightened probability of testicular cancer, sterility and damage to DNA? How many Canadians are aware of the scientific evidence that suggests marijuana can negatively impact pre- and post-natal development?

Such warnings, provided from Health Canada and the Canadian Centre on Substance Use, are not the rantings of reefer madness, but rather, statements by highly regarded institutions.

Pamela McColl, Vancouver


77 CN BC: British Columbia Going Down The Road To PotWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:Quesnel Cariboo Observer (CN BC) Author:Alexander, Ken Area:British Columbia Lines:127 Added:12/24/2017

Province releases first decisions on cannabis regulation after public engagement

After receiving input from 48,951 British Columbians and submissions from 141 local and Indigenous governments and other interested stakeholders, the provincial government made some decisions on the anticipated legalization of non-medical cannabis in July 2018.

On Dec. 5, the NDP government announced the following policy decisions:

Minimum age

The Province will set the minimum age to possess, purchase and consume cannabis at 19 years old. A minimum age of 19 is consistent with B.C.'s minimum age for alcohol and tobacco and with the age of majority in B.C.

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78 CN ON: LTE: Support For Legal Pot ShortsightedTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Kingston Whig-Standard (CN ON) Author:Summers, Catharina Area:Ontario Lines:48 Added:12/24/2017

Re: "Public health supports legalization of marijuana," Dec. 16.

The problem with having one's head in the sand is that you can't open your eyes!

It is concerning that our local public health unit supports the legal sale of marijuana to those over the age of 18 years of age, yet at the same time it acknowledges that regular marijuana use for those under the age of 25 years will reduce the cognitive functioning of their still-developing brain. Quite the contradiction. It is almost as if the health unit is of the mindset that once marijuana use becomes legal, fewer of our young adults with indulge.

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79CN AB: Marijuana Plans Get Wide Support, Poll ShowsTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Kent, Gordon Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

Most Albertans support the provincial government's proposed regulations for legalized marijuana, according to a new Insights West poll.

Almost two-thirds of respondents to the online poll agree with the decision to prevent pot stores from selling alcohol, tobacco or pharmaceuticals, while 77 per cent favour setting 18 as the legal age for buying marijuana.

While 60 per cent of Albertans support legalization, up five percentage points since a national poll done in October 2016, the poll found a split along party lines.

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80 CN PI: LTE: Children At Risk From Pot SmokeTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Guardian, The (CN PI) Author:McColl, Pamela Area:Prince Edward Island Lines:27 Added:12/24/2017

The recent announcement by the provincial government that marijuana use will be restricted to private residences to help limit its impact on communities and public health ignores the rights of children to protection from second-hand smoke in their homes.

Marijuana smoke is a recognized carcinogen and as with exposure to tobacco smoke, can cause serious health risks for those involved. Nearly one-third of deaths from tobacco second-hand smoke exposure are children, many of whom are infants.

Pamela McColl,



81 CN PI: LTE: Liberals Exposed For LegalizationTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Guardian, The (CN PI) Author:Staples, Garth E. Area:Prince Edward Island Lines:25 Added:12/24/2017

The federal Liberal Trudeau government has been exposed as to why marijuana is being legalized, so called.

The feds and provinces have been busy "cutting up the cash" to pay for the new healthcare and policing expenses which will be generated by the "weed."

Why generate the need for new expenses by the indiscriminate use of marijuana? Governments have gone mad.

Garth E. Staples, Charlottetown


82Canada: Column: The Fermi Model And Marijuana Usage StatisticsTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Cash, Colby Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

Statistics Canada has tackled a tricky but important question: how much marijuana have Canadians been consuming in the years leading up to 2018's intended legalization of the stuff? This is the kind of thing that hard scientists and engineers call a "Fermi problem," named in honour of the Italian-American nuclear pioneer Enrico Fermi.

Our data on the collective consumption of marijuana are pretty sparse. We don't have an easy way to infer the total volume of consumption for the whole country. But as a practical matter we need some estimate, even if we think consumption will double, or halve, when pot is legalized. Investors are gambling on the existence of a marijuana market, measured in dollars, and on some figure for total national demand, measured in tonnes.

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83CN ON: 'Prince Of Pot'a Wife Plead Guilty To Drug ChargesTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Casey, Liam Area:Ontario Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

Fines, probation for Marc and Jodie Emery

TORONTO * Prominent pot activists Jodie and Marc Emery have been fined and placed on probation after pleading guilty to a number of drug- related charges in a Toronto court.

Marc Emery, the self-proclaimed "Prince of Pot," pleaded guilty to possession of marijuana for the purpose of trafficking, trafficking marijuana and possession of proceeds of crime more than $5,000.

Jodie Emery pleaded guilty to possession of marijuana for purpose of trafficking and possession of proceeds of crime over $5,000.

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84 CN ON: Peer-Based Program Aims To Reduce Unsafe Needle DisposalTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Weidner, Johanna Area:Ontario Lines:102 Added:12/24/2017

CAMBRIDGE - An innovative new peer-based pilot project will be launched in Cambridge early next year with the aim of curbing improper needle disposal in the community.

The project is a partnership between Region of Waterloo Public Health, which will provide funding, Sanguen Health Centre and the City of Cambridge.

Along with removing needles through patrols and education, it will offer employment and skill development to people who have experienced substance abuse; they will be hired as the peer workers.

"There is no harm in trying other methods to connect people and get them on board," said Violet Umanetz, Sanguen's outreach manager. "The peers do so well working in the community."

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85 Canada: Data Highlight Canada's 'Serious And Growing' Opioid CrisisTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:Canada Lines:89 Added:12/24/2017

Canada is on pace to lose more than 4,000 people to opioid-related deaths this year - with about one-third of them in British Columbia, according to new figures from the Public Health Agency of Canada.

The grim update was in a national report the federal government released on Monday. The report described the country's opioid crisis as "serious and growing," devastating families and communities nationwide.

"Tragically, the data released today indicate that the crisis continues to worsen, despite the efforts from all levels of government and partners to reverse the trend," chief public health officer Theresa Tam and Nova Scotia chief medical officer of health Robert Strang, co-chairs of Canada's special advisory committee on opioids, said in a statement.

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86 CN ON: City Shooting For Quick OD-Prevention SiteWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:London Free Press (CN ON) Author:Bieman, Jennifer Area:Ontario Lines:127 Added:12/24/2017

In the wake of a deadly opioid drug crisis that's killed hundreds in Ontario, London health officials are fast-tracking a pop-up, - -overdose-prevention site they want to have up and running by January.

The stripped-down version of a supervised consumption site will give drug users a safer environment to inject. The location of the site, or the total number if there is more than one, hasn't been pinned down. But the plan is to have at least one as early as possible in 2018.

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87 CN ON: Windsor Cops Leery Of Life-Saving DrugWed, 20 Dec 2017
Source:London Free Press (CN ON) Author:Wilhelm, Trevor Area:Ontario Lines:57 Added:12/24/2017

Officers fear SIU probe if they can't revive opioid OD victims with naloxone

WINDSOR - The fear of officers getting into a legal jam for trying to save someone from an overdose has made the Windsor police service hesitant to embrace a medication that fights the effects of opioids.

Police officials are not rushing to use naloxone, despite the province's offer to pay for it, because officers who try and fail to revive someone from an overdose would face an investigation by the Special Investigations Unit (SIU).

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88CN ON: Gignac Calls For City Input On Location Of Pot StoreTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Windsor Star (CN ON) Author:Cross, Brian Area:Ontario Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

Predicting a "mess" of traffic chaos and policing problems when the province opens a cannabis retail store in Windsor, Coun. Jo-Anne Gignac Monday called for the city to have some input on the location.

Her motion, passed by council, involves expressing concerns about increased policing demands and making the province aware the city has a designated entertainment district downtown where there is already a beefed-up police presence.

"I'm expressing concern that I want to make sure it's done right," she said.

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89 CN ON: Weeding Out ProblemsTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Kenora Daily Miner And News (CN ON)          Area:Ontario Lines:76 Added:12/24/2017

Keewatin-Patricia public school board trustees not up for blowing smoke

Legalized marijuana concerns public school board trustees. With the legalization of marijuana closer to becoming a reality the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board is concerned how the new law could impact its students.

During the Dec. 12 monthly board meeting the educational aspect of the topic was brought up, though everyone agreed to wait until the Ministry of Education provides some direction on how to proceed with the issue. Many of the board members expressed concern students might acquire the stimulant "off the streets" since they wouldn't be of legal age to purchase it in stores.

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90 CN AB: Pot Plan Gaining ApprovalTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Fort McMurray Today (CN AB) Author:Kent, Gordon Area:Alberta Lines:51 Added:12/24/2017

Albertans high on province's marijuana plans: Poll

Most Albertans support the provincial government's proposed regulations for legalized marijuana, according to a new Insights West poll.

Almost two-thirds of respondents to the online poll agree with the decision to prevent pot stores from selling alcohol, tobacco or pharmaceuticals, while 77 per cent favour setting 18 as the legal age for buying marijuana.

While 60 per cent of Albertans support legalization, up five percentage points since a national poll done in October 2016, the poll found a split along party lines.

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91 CN MB: Winkler To Ignore Deadline For Pot PlebisciteTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Winnipeg Free Press (CN MB) Author:Rollason, Kevin Area:Manitoba Lines:85 Added:12/24/2017

WINKLER'S mayor vows that until the smoke clears on pot legalization, his community won't vote to allow retailers to sell recreational pot.

Mayor Martin Harder says his council recently decided to ignore the province's Dec. 22 deadline to vote on the issue.

"Our biggest issue is the rules keep changing," Harder said on Monday.

"They said you have to vote by Dec. 22 and then the next one says you can have four years to have a plebiscite. We don't want to do that.

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92US CA: Legalized Marijuana Will Be A Bit Different From Version ThatSun, 24 Dec 2017
Source:San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Author:Rosenhall, Laurel Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2017

Some details of legalized recreational marijuana have changed since California voters approved Proposition 64 in 2016.

California is days away from launching a legal marketplace for adults to buy and sell recreational marijuana. On Jan. 1, the state will carry through on a vision voters endorsed by passing Proposition 64 last year.

Yet as legal cannabis moves from campaign pitch to reality - amid lots of lobbying by industry groups along the way - some details of the plan have changed. State regulators approved the official rules last month and will update them in about a year.

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93US CA: Jack In The Box Tests Munchie Meals For California Pot SmokersFri, 22 Dec 2017
Source:Seattle Post-Intelligencer (WA) Author:Giammona, Craig Area:California Lines:Excerpt Added:12/22/2017

For Jack in the Box Inc., the warm smell of marijuana is rising in the air.

As California prepares for legal recreational pot on Jan. 1, the fast-food chain is partnering with a digital media company backed by rapper Snoop Dogg on a new "munchie" meal aimed at cannabis enthusiasts. While marijuana's connection to fast food is well-established, Jack in the Box will become the first national chain to explicitly embrace the drug.

The "Merry Munchie Meal," which will be available at three California locations for a week in January for $4.20, features two tacos, french fries, onion rings, five mini churros, three chicken strips and a small drink. The price isn't random: The number 420 is used as a code by potheads.

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94US VT: Several Doctors, Others Warn Vermont Not To Legalize PotFri, 22 Dec 2017
Source:Seattle Post-Intelligencer (WA) Author:Rathke, Lisa Area:Vermont Lines:Excerpt Added:12/22/2017

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - With the state Legislature expected to take up legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in the upcoming session, several doctors and other marijuana opponents on Friday urged the state not to legalize it.

The move would normalize the use of marijuana, leading to more people using it and in turn to more intoxicated people and more automobile crashes, said Dr. John Hughes, a University of Vermont psychiatrist and professor, at a Statehouse press conference on Friday.

"To me, we got it right with decriminalization," according to Hughes, who added that legalization and describing it as recreational use would send the wrong message.

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95 CN ON: Carfentanil Changes The StakesThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Simcoe Reformer, The (CN ON) Author:Sonnenberg, Monte Area:Ontario Lines:88 Added:12/21/2017

Narcotics back in the day were more a nuisance than anything else.

Local police would regularly arrest people for possession of marijuana. Sometimes something more exotic like psychedelic mushrooms would materialize.

The situation became more of a concern when cocaine and its derivatives appeared on the scene. Then came methamphetamine and opioids such as Oxycontin and hydromorphone.

Heroin was never an issue locally like it has been in urban areas.

Instead, rural areas like Norfolk and Haldimand skipped straight to more problematic substances such as fentanyl and carfentanil. These powerful synthetic opioids have caused the number of drug overdose deaths in Canada to skyrocket in recent months.

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96 CN AB: Tackling Drugs, Terror And HateThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Maimann, Kevin Area:Alberta Lines:115 Added:12/21/2017

The head of Edmonton's Police Service looks ahead to 2018 with skepticism around supervised consumption sites,

Edmonton Police Service Chief Rod Knecht says police have had a good but "extremely busy" year. Metro asked him about some of the year's biggest stories and what to expect in 2018. The interview has been edited for space.

Metro: Cannabis will be legal July 1. Has EPS backed off marijuana related arrests since legalization was announced?

We're busy. Obviously there's lots of crimes, and we enforce crime on priority.

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97 CN AB: LTE: How High?Thu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Comeau, Larry Area:Alberta Lines:34 Added:12/21/2017

Re: High Workforce, Mike Soch.

Mr. Soch is exactly right that with the legalization of pot on July 1, 2018, we can expect many more workplace injuries. We only have to look at what has happened in Colorado, where after legalization, workplace injuries rose from 6-20%. Too many people erroneously try to equate using marijuana with alcohol. Whereas alcohol leaves the system in about 12 hours, THC can stay in one's system for many days. This means someone getting stoned the night before, may be unknowingly still quite impaired when they show up for work the next day. This will be a particular problem in the mining and oil industry where there is heavy equipment, thus the reason some companies like Suncor want mandatory drug testing.

Larry Comeau

(C'mon, let's not go all Reefer Madness.)


98Canada: Column: Pot Plan Another Liberal MessThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:McParland, Kelly Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:12/21/2017

My favourite moment in the unfurling disaster of marijuana legalization was the one in which First Nations leaders demanded control over pot sales, distribution, regulation and policing within Indigenous communities, and the right to set the laws that will oversee its use by their people.

Of course they did. First Nations view themselves as just that - sovereign nations - with the right to govern themselves as they see fit. Why would control of pot be any different than anything else?

My second favourite moment occurred just shortly afterwards, when federal and provincial finance ministers got together to divvy up the loot. The gathering reminded me of the scene in James Bond films when the well-dressed hoodlums of SPECTRE sit around a table tallying their proceeds: kidnapping revenue is a pleasant surprise, extortion income is way up, and blackmail is thriving. It took some arguing, but in this case No. 1 - that would be Bill Morneau - agreed to cut the federal take to 25 per cent without having to push a button and have one of the ministers carted away as a corpse.

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99Canada: Health Canada Boosts Number Of Pot SuppliersThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:McQuigge, Michelle Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:12/21/2017

Shortages feared after legalization hits next July

OTTAWA - Health Canada has nearly doubled the number of licensed cannabis producers in the country over the past six months and new numbers show hundreds more applicants are in the final stages of approval as the government rushes toward national marijuana legalization by next July.

The dramatic surge in approved and aspiring producers comes in the wake of the agency's concerted efforts to loosen its bureaucratic approval process and head off what many experts fear will be a looming supply crunch for the burgeoning legal cannabis market.

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100 CN BC: Stop Treating Pot Like Plutonium, Says Local Dispensary OwnerThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Chief, The (CN BC) Author:Johnson, Pat Area:British Columbia Lines:96 Added:12/21/2017

Concerns still abound as cannabis legalization planned for this summer fast approaches

A Squamish cannabis retailer thinks the province's recent announcement around the sale of marijuana is a step in the right direction but says there are still many unanswered questions.

"I'm excited, but there is still not much that's changed since the announcement," says Bryan Raiser, owner of 99 North Dispensary.

The federal government has said marijuana will be legalized by July 1 of next year but handed it over to the provinces to determine how to manage the details.

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