Metro Vancouver seeks input on rules to reduce cannabis grow odours

Metro Vancouver is taking feedback through Nov. 30 about potential air quality issues related to cannabis growing and processing plants in the region.

Anyone concerned with air quality issues related to cannabis growing and processing plants is invited to give feedback to Metro Vancouver in the coming weeks.

The regional district has responsibility for some air quality issues, and it has put forward proposed new rules to manage emissions related to cannabis.

Members of the public along with cannabis industry representatives are expected to weigh in on the proposed rules.

The proposed rules can be found on Metro Vancouver’s website.

Metro Vancouver’s discussion paper on the subject notes that greenhouses formerly used for growing vegetables were refitted for cannabis production shortly after legalization in 2018.

“Metro Vancouver as well as member municipalities have received complaints about odorous emissions from cannabis production operations,” the paper notes.

Cannabis growing can result in the creation of volatile organic compounds, which may contribute to the creation of harmful ground-level ozone. There can also be fine particulate matter.

“Emissions most notably occur during the flowering, harvesting, drying, and trimming phases, during which high levels of a group of VOCs called terpenes can be produced,” the paper says.

Terpenes can create strong odours as well as contributing to particulate and ozone.

Metro Vancouver’s guiding principles for new rules are about prevention and control of emissions, following a “discharger pays” principle, and addressing the public’s concerns. However, the paper noted that odours may not be entirely eliminated.

The proposed rules include requirements for emissions to be captured and treated with activated carbon filters, with complaints response plans and a 200 metre minimum distance for new facilities from residential properties, hospitals, schools, daycares, playgrounds and care homes.

Metro is hosting another webinar on Thursday, Nov. 4 from 1 to 2 p.m., and continues to take feedback via their website and from people calling 604-432-6200.

Nov. 30 is the deadline for providing feedback.


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