District 8 is taking on more than cannabis cultivation with their facility. They are using their operation to improve technology, social responsibility, and ultimately the future of cannabis. Their dedication to clean and sustainable cultivation practices set them apart from the competition – you can literally taste the D8 difference.
Using less water and fewer nutrients provides the D8 team with significant cost savings, but they are also paying heed to their environmental responsibility.
The D8 team uses water supplied by the local town, but they realize they are not the only group who does so. For example, California and Nevada cannabis operations rely heavily on the Colorado River for its fresh water.
It is no secret that states like Nevada and California struggle to gain access to sources of potable water as their population surges and rainfall remains historically low. Often times, fertilizers, metals, and other toxins concentrate in soil and through runoff and erosion, they are able to contaminate the water supplies in these states.
This becomes particularly concerning when you begin to understand how chemicals and toxins concentrate in cannabis, and ultimately in the consumer’s body.
Cannabis legalization spurred restrictions and bans on a variety of popular chemical-based pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides. Eagle 20 – a synthetic chemical based fungicide – is on such culprit.
Last year, the Denver Dept. of Environmental Health conducted a sweeping investigation of local grow-ops and discovered the rampant use of Eagle 20. Investigators quarantined thousands of plants citing that the use of Eagle 20 could be unsafe for human consumption.
This sudden investigation came as a surprise to many established cannabis companies. The laws and regulations that govern the cannabis industry in Colorado are regularly changing. District 8’s approach to these ever-changing regulations is simple – stay ready so you don’t have to get ready.
District 8 uses absolutely ZERO chemicals in their process. That’s right – no pesticides, no herbicides, and no fungicides. Instead, D8 uses a variety of insects that help to manage the potential for pest and mold issues. D8 introduces “beneficial bugs” to the ecosystem whose food supply is “bad bugs”.
Instead of guessing which insects may be causing problems in their ecosystem, the D8 team monitors how well the beneficial bugs are thriving.
If lead cultivator Anthony Brach notices that his beneficial bugs are dying, then he knows they do not have a proper food supply. This chain of events allows him to determine that there are not bad bugs present in the system.
In this scenario, a few bugs die, but their death is nothing compared to the millions of humans, animals, and bugs that would be affected by the use of chemicals, now and in the future.
As mentioned, D8 uses a greenhouse model for their cultivation. Cannabis industry connoisseurs are often quick to turn their noses up at greenhouses, but D8 challenges their position.
Former NFL linebacker and co-owner of District 8, Marques Harris, gave some insight into D8’s philosophy about energy use.
It’s about sustainability and environmental responsibility. We farm sunlight (energy) as much as we do cannabis. There is no need to consume massive amounts of electricity when we can replicate the warehouse model using natural energy and inputs.
The use of natural sunlight to cultivate cannabis is undoubtedly superior to any light system on the market. While some may argue that indoor growing allows for total manipulation of the environment, what they fail to realize is that nature is not 100% replicable – there will always be a minor detail missing.
D8 captures the sun’s energy and is able to distribute it throughout the facility for climate control needs. This method provides significant cost savings to the operation but also reduces the amount of pollution expelled. Seems like a win-win, doesn’t it?
The easiest way to describe this method of “harvesting the sun” is to compare it to geothermal energy. Instead of capturing heat energy from the ground, they take it from the sky.
Not only does D8 power their operation with this process, but also they are poised to feed energy back to the local energy grid.
Their energy contribution to the town of De Beque, Colorado could be enough to supply a town of 500 with power.