We are watching our planet be continuously wounded. The effects of climate change are no secret. Droughts, bushfires, storms, floods and other various weather events are well known. We see them on the news, social media and everywhere in between. One incredible plant that can truly drive the sustainable transition is hemp. From clearing the air to regenerating soil and providing a habitat for wildlife, hemp is good for the planet and has many environmental benefits, plain and simple. Not to mention, it is also beneficial for human health. It’s saving the world and has the ability to help us create a more sustainable world. Find out below the reasons why.
1. It Breathes in Co2
Hemp is essentially nature’s purifier. The plant rapidly works to capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and makes the air that we are breathing in, much cleaner. To put it in perspective for you, for every tonne of hemp that is produced, 1.63 tonnes of carbon is removed from the air which makes hemp a much more effective sequester of Co2 than trees.
2. It Regenerates Soil
The leaves and stem of the hemp plant are packed with incredible nutrients. As the plant matures and the seed grows, leaf matter drops to the ground and decomposes, which replenishes the soil with goodness, ready for the next crop. After harvesting, the remnants of the hemp plant can be returned to the soil to make for a much richer yield the following year, which makes another influential environmental benefit for the hemp plant.
3. Hemp Supports & Encourages Sustainable Farming
One of the most crucial aspects of sustainable farming surrounds rotating crops according to the season in a means to maintain soil nutrients. Because hemp is an annual crop which grows quickly, within just four months of being planted, it is a perfect candidate for rotation and makes for a brilliant environmental benefit for hemp. Farmers across the globe rejoice, meaning richer, cleaner soil and a much greater crop yield.
4. Hemp Actually Helps Against Pesticides
Unlike various other natural fibres such as flax and cotton, hemp does not require any herbicides or pesticides to grow. Expose to these nasties has been proven to cause environmental issues such as water contamination and has also been linked to various health problems such as cancer. A potential solution to this is using hemp across the globe and reducing the number of pollutants and toxins in our water and air.
5. It Helps to Prevent Soil Erosion
The roots of the hemp plant grow incredible strong and up to nine feet deep. These types of root networks can help to hold soil together and prevent erosion which is a great challenge faces by farmers today. In a number of cases, the environmental benefit of hemp is that it has even restored soil that was already damaged.
6. Hemp Requires Very Little Water
Hemp has the incredible ability to irrigate itself naturally which means it requires little water to grow. This sets hemp apart from other plant-based milk options such as almond or soya and other natural fibre such as cotton which are incredibly thirsty. In fact, another area where hemp can benefit the environment is in clothing. We could switch cotton out for hemp as a cotton t-shirt requires 3 years of a person’s drinking water to create.
7.With Hemp, Nothing Goes to Waste
Hemp can be used to produce over 25,000 products which means absolutely nothing goes to waste with hemp. An additional miraculous environment benefit of hemp, once harvested the seed can be used to produce healthy food products, the flowers and leaves are used to make beauty products also and the stalk can be used for natural fibre.
8. It Absorbs Toxic Metals
We’ve mentioned above how hemp can clear the air and replenish damaged soil and additionally, hemp can also eliminate harmful toxins and it does this by absorbing them. The plant has been famously used following events such as the nuclear disaster that took place in Chernobyl. They used hemp to remove cesium and strontium and the plant has also be considered for removing radiation from Fukushima.
9. It Provides a Habitat for Wildlife
A great environmental benefit of hemp is that its plants grow up to around three feet tall which makes them a brilliant little hiding place for wildlife. Additionally, when the hemp flowers bloom, they are an excellent pollen source for bees.
10. Helps in the Fight Against Deforestation
Scientists across the globe now believe that within 100 years, there will no longer be rainforest. However, there is some hope in hemp. Although trees take years to mature, hemp can be grown in just four months. Therefore, hemp could replace trees as a source of raw material for paper. Hemp is incredible for the planet and may just save it.
In summary, hemp can help us massively in creating a more sustainable world. It is a true superhero that can help us tackle important areas such as biodiversity, deforestation, farming, air pollution and much more. For the sake of the planet and the health of all living on it, we need to welcome this plant with open arms.