This City in New York Is Smoking More Weed Than Anywhere Else in the State

New York City is known for many things: its iconic skyline, its diverse culture, its vibrant nightlife, and its status as a global hub of finance, media, and entertainment. But according to a recent study, the Big Apple also has another distinction: it is the city that consumes more marijuana than any other place in the state, and even in the world.

The Study

The study, titled the 2023 Cannabis Global Price Index, was conducted by ABCD, a data-driven media campaign outlet that aims to inform the public about the potential benefits of cannabis legalization. The study analyzed the consumption and price of cannabis in 120 cities across the world, using data from various sources such as the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and local authorities

The study ranked the cities based on the annual amount of cannabis consumed per capita, the percentage of the population that uses cannabis, the average price of cannabis per gram, and the potential tax revenue from legalizing cannabis. The study also estimated the total value of the cannabis market in each city, based on the assumption that the price of cannabis would be equal to the average price of cigarettes.

The Results

The results of the study revealed that New York City tops the list of the world’s cannabis consumers, with an average of 62.3 metric tons of weed consumed every year. That translates to about 62 million grams, or 6.9 grams per year for each of the city’s 8.4 million residents. That’s enough to fill up more than one and a half 18-wheeler trucks, 300 small bathtubs, or a backyard pool

New York City also has the highest percentage of cannabis users among the cities surveyed, with 32.5% of the population reporting cannabis use in the past year. The average price of cannabis in the city is $10.76 per gram, which is slightly lower than the global average of $11.26. The study estimated that the total value of the cannabis market in New York City is $4.1 billion, and that the city could generate $1.1 billion in tax revenue from legalizing cannabis

The study also found that New York City consumes more cannabis than the entire state of Colorado, which legalized recreational marijuana in 2014. Colorado consumes about 49.3 metric tons of cannabis per year, or 8.6 grams per person. The state has a population of 5.7 million and a cannabis market worth $2.4 billion

The Implications

The study’s findings have significant implications for the ongoing debate over cannabis legalization in New York State. On March 31, 2021, former Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill that legalized recreational marijuana for adults aged 21 and older, making New York the 15th state to do so. The bill also expunged previous marijuana-related criminal records and established a regulatory framework for the cultivation, distribution, and sale of cannabis

The bill was hailed as a historic step for social justice, racial equity, and economic development, as it aimed to address the disproportionate impact of cannabis prohibition on communities of color and create new opportunities for entrepreneurs and workers in the emerging industry. The bill also allocated 40% of the tax revenue from cannabis sales to fund education, 40% to support communities affected by the war on drugs, and 20% to fund drug treatment and prevention programs

However, the bill also faced some challenges and criticisms, such as the delay in appointing the members of the Cannabis Control Board, the body that will oversee the implementation of the law and issue licenses to cannabis businesses.

The board was supposed to be appointed by June 2021, but as of October 2021, only two of the five members had been named. This has caused uncertainty and frustration among potential applicants and consumers, who are still waiting for the legal market to open

Another issue that has raised concerns is the impact of cannabis legalization on public health and safety, especially among youth and drivers. According to the New York City Department of Health, cannabis use can have negative effects on brain development, mental health, respiratory health, and academic performance, especially among adolescents and young adults.

The department also warns that cannabis use can impair driving skills and increase the risk of crashes and injuries. The department advises people to avoid driving under the influence of cannabis, to limit their consumption to low doses and infrequent use, and to seek help if they experience problems related to cannabis use.

The Conclusion

New York City is the world’s capital of cannabis consumption, according to a recent study that measured the amount, price, and value of cannabis in 120 cities. The study showed that New York City consumes more weed than any other city in the state, and even in the world, and that it has the potential to generate a huge amount of tax revenue from legalizing cannabis.

However, the study also highlighted the need for a careful and responsible approach to cannabis legalization, as it involves complex and sensitive issues such as social justice, public health, and safety. As New York State prepares to launch its legal cannabis market, it will have to balance the benefits and risks of cannabis use, and ensure that the law is implemented in a fair and effective manner.

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