Santa Barbara County Approves Study To Address Ongoing Cannabis Odor

in Culture

The topic of odor is prevalent among communities in close proximity to cannabis cultivation operations, and Santa Barbara is no different. Recently the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors met on April 23 to discuss how to tackle the issue, and ultimately voted 3-2 to commission a study to evaluate further options.

According to Santa Barbara Independent, there are some expensive tech devices such as carbon filters (nicknamed “scrubbers”) that could potentially reduce cannabis aroma, ultimately preventing it from being detected outside of the facilities. However, scrubbers are priced at $22,000 a piece, and in order for them to be effective, a grow would need one for every 10 acres. More fees are factored in later with “electrical upgrades,” which the Santa Barbara County planners told the board it would be a “potentially prohibitive expense.”

Both Board Chair Steve Lavagnino and Supervisor Das Williams, who helped push along Santa Barbara County’s 2018 cannabis ordinance, stated that it wouldn’t be fair to require cultivators to purchase such machines. Supervisor Joan Hartman agreed as well, and the trio voted in the majority to have a six-month study commissioned.

Currently, there are only five greenhouses that have scrubbers, out of a total of 20 operating in Carpinteria Valley, located east of the city of Santa Barbara. 

The study would analyze “power upgrades that may be necessary in advance of scrubber installations,” according to Santa Barbara Independent. Hartman said that she supported scrubbers for greenhouses, but also wants to see a resolution for the cannabis aroma that comes from sungrown operations as well. She claimed that the smell that exists between Highway 246 and Santa Rosa Road, detectable in Buellton and Solvang (located northwest of Santa Barbara) needs to be addressed. “It’s really a disservice to our public not to regulate cannabis odor for the most sensitive …

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Author: Nicole Potter / High Times

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