MJ Advocates Debate a New Legalization Effort
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MJ Advocates Debate a New Legalization Effort
Posted by CN Staff on January 30, 2011 at 06:50:17 PT
By John Hoeffel, Los Angeles Times
Source: Los Angeles Times 
Reporting from Berkeley -- The drive to put another marijuana legalization initiative on the California ballot took a step forward Saturday when activists from across the state squeezed into a crowded conference center here to launch the debate over writing the next ballot measure.The campaign for Proposition 19, which lost 54% to 46% in November, wants to start drafting a new initiative in the spring and to complete it by July, turning then to the expensive and time-consuming task of building support and qualifying it for the November 2012 ballot.
Saturday's conference, sponsored by the California chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, was aimed at reaching out to marijuana legalization activists, medical marijuana growers and dispensary operators, many of whom opposed the last measure."We knew there was a lot of dissatisfaction," said Dale Gieringer, the organization's California director who organized the conference, the first in more than a decade. "A lot of people felt excluded because the writing process of Proposition 19 was very closed."The initiative was spearheaded and financially backed by Richard Lee, a successful Oakland medical marijuana entrepreneur who made the key decisions on the legal language. It drew opposition from some prominent defense lawyers who said it did not go far enough to decriminalize marijuana, and from some operators of medical marijuana dispensaries who worried that it would undercut their lucrative businesses and lead to more bans on stores.The initiative would have allowed adults 21 and older to possess and grow marijuana, and it would have authorized cities and counties to pass ordinances to legalize sales."Truly, this is a planning exercise," Dale Sky Jones, the spokeswoman for the Proposition 19 campaign, told the crowd at the David Brower Center near the University of California campus. "We're here to hear you. This is the building process."The conference drew about 300 attendees, including Yamileth Bolanos, a dispensary operator from Los Angeles. Like others in the business who came to the event, she said she wants to be sure that medical marijuana is not undercut by a legalization initiative. "We shouldn't be stomped on or used as a stepping stone to get to where they want to go," she said.Jones said medical marijuana patients are crucial to the success of any initiative because they can reach out to voters to dispel myths about marijuana. "It's largely going to be the messaging through the medical community and those that love them that can put this over the top," she said.The campaign intends to create a broad-based committee to oversee the next initiative, replacing the singular role played by Lee, who did not attend the conference. "It's not about him anymore. It's about the issue, which is what he always wanted," Jones said.Jones said the campaign has not yet named the committee because it is does not want to create an early target for critics. "When you start planting your flag in the ground, people find reasons not to stand under that flag," she said.The state Legislature's two most marijuana-friendly lawmakers dropped in to tell activists they will continue to press for changes in Sacramento. State Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) noted that he introduced a bill last week to prevent employers from firing most medical marijuana patients who test positive for the drug and pledged to reintroduce a bill to allow California farmers to grow industrial hemp. Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) said that he would try again to move his bill to legalize marijuana sales, but that he was also considering a piecemeal approach.Although Saturday's conference offered activists a chance to air their views, it also underscored how difficult it will be to write a measure that pleases the diverse community. Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, which has played a major role in California's drug reform initiatives, warned that activists were going to have to balance their principles with what will be possible to pass. "All I can think is, God, this is complicated," he said.Dennis Peron, who led the campaign to pass the medical marijuana initiative in 1996 and has become an irritant to legalization activists, said that activists should focus on bringing medical marijuana to other states. Peron believes anyone who uses marijuana is doing it for medical reasons, so anyone who wants to get it legally in California already can. "We've got to do it for the other people, not just for ourselves. These people are all about money," he said.Jeff Jones, who was a co-proponent of Proposition 19 along with Lee, said he is anticipating that the process of shaping the next initiative will be arduous and heated. "I view the drafting phase as a little like the British Parliament, a lot of screaming and yelling," he said.Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Author: John Hoeffel, Los Angeles Times Published: January 30, 2011Copyright: 2011 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comWebsite:  -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #5 posted by Hope on August 08, 2011 at 20:08:25 PT
I miss these peoples' comments on whatever article or subject at hand.They enriched my life. Thankfully, some, like ekim, and The GCW, still do. And dddd and Kaptinemo are still raising a ruckus over at DrugWarRant.
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Comment #4 posted by ekim on January 31, 2011 at 17:16:50 PT
hi ezrydn cannabis is 77% cellulose 
here is a older story -
Golden, Colo. - Two technologies developed by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory are among this year's most significant innovations, as judged by Research & Development (R&D) Magazine.The Laboratory's two R&D 100 Awards for 2004 are for an innovative, lower-cost method for transforming plant material into the sugars that can be used to make fuels and chemicals, and a thin-film solar cell that produces electricity directly from sunlight, which has greater efficiency, and is lighter weight and more flexible than previous devices.This year's announcement brings to 37 the number of R&D 100 Awards garnered by NREL."Once again, the technologies developed by our Laboratory's researchers are being acknowledged for their importance to the nation," said Stan Bull, NREL associate director for science and technology. "It's particularly gratifying that the R&D 100 Awards this year include two NREL technologies that can enhance our nation's energy security and reduce our reliance on foreign sources of oil."The Enzymatic Hydrolysis of Biomass Cellulose to Sugars technology is expected to allow a wide range of biomass resources to be used to produce energy and chemicals. It is an important step toward realizing the potential of bio-refineries-in which plant and waste materials are used to produce an array of fuels and chemicals, analogous to an oil refinery today.Through this technology, the cost of converting cellulosic biomass into usable sugars can be reduced by more than 20 times per gallon of ethanol produced.The award is shared by NREL, Genencor International and Novozymes Biotech, Inc. NREL researchers who worked on this project included Michael Himmel, Jim McMillan, Dan Schell, Jody Farmer, Nancy Dowe and Rafael Nieves.Also recognized for 2004 are light and flexible thin-film copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) photovoltaic modules, which can be manufactured in various sizes and have a compact, foldable design that allows for easy deployment, transport and storage.As a result, the modules have twice the power-to-weight ratio, and three times the power-to-size ratio as competing products. Because of this, they are especially suited for military applications, portable power for consumer and public use, boating and other marine applications and building-related uses, such as for bus shelters and in PV-integrated roofing.The award is shared by NREL, Global Solar Energy and ITN Energy Systems. NREL researchers who worked on this project included Harin Ullal, Ken Zweibel and Bolko von Roedern.NREL is the U.S. Department of Energy's premier laboratory for renewable energy research and development and a leading laboratory for energy efficiency R&D. NREL is operated for DOE by Midwest Research Institute and Battelle. For further information contact NREL Public Affairs at (303) 275-4090.NR-3404
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on January 31, 2011 at 07:10:10 PT
Ekim can post what is important to him. I have never heard anyone complain.
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Comment #2 posted by ezrydn on January 31, 2011 at 06:37:54 PT:
Hey Mike
Next time, how about trying to stay on topic? 
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Comment #1 posted by ekim on January 30, 2011 at 08:02:09 PT
what happen to tax payer study with gas at $3.50gl
web site is not working-- Berkley is near Palo Alto 
who knows anything about this 17 million dollar study 
now that oil is 90 a barrel and poised to rise, as it was half of that back in 2001 when this study was ordered. 
Genencor Meets First Technical Milestone in Biomass to Ethanol Project 
Genencor Labs, Palo Alto, California Genencor International, Inc. announced that it has achieved its first technical milestone in its three-year contract with the U.S. Department of Energy Biofuels Program. Genencor developed and validated processes for improved cellulase enzymes that meet the intended objective at one-half the cost of currently available technologies. "Advances in molecular biology and functional genomics enable us to push the frontiers of commercial development and we're pleased to be making progress toward developing new enzyme systems to accomplish the goal of this project," said Michael Arbige, Ph.D, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. The goal of the program is to develop new enzyme systems for the economic conversion of plant matter into ethanol and other valuable materials. DOE has determined that the cost of converting biomass into useable form is a critical stumbling block to producing biofuels and chemicals from renewable raw materials. Specifically, Genencor and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory are working to deliver enzyme systems enabling a 10-fold improvement in the economics of breaking down cellulosic material (plant matter) and other complex carbohydrates into fermentable sugars. "The United States is the world's leader in agriculture and biotechnology and the Department's biomass research and development efforts take advantage of that position," said David Garman, the U.S. Department of Energy's Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. "The President's Energy Policy promotes the development of renewable energy sources and we look to biomass for significant contributions to reducing America's dependence on foreign oil." 
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