Brewery, Marijuana Grower Recycle CO2 to Save Trees, Grow Weed

A Denver brewery and commercial marijuana cultivator are both saving trees and growing weed, thanks to an emissions recycling partnership.

Earlier this year, Denver Beer Co. and the Clinic dispensary announced a plan in which the Clinic’s marijuana growers would use the carbon dioxide produced during Denver Beer’s fermentation process as a growing supplement. The first installment of a pilot program unveiled by the state departments of Energy and Public Health and Environment in January, the partnership has since saved 93 trees’ worth of CO2 emissions, according to Denver Beer, while also helping the Clinic grow its product more sustainably.

A byproduct of yeast converting sugars into alcohol and carbonation during beer production, CO2 is also a marijuana growing supplement used to boost yields. Earthly Labs, a Colorado carbon emissions recycling company, has been capturing Denver Beer’s CO2, purifying it, then handing it off to the Clinic, which has been using the recycled CO2 for most of 2020.

Marijuana plants take months to grow from seed, however, so the project partners have just now been able to determine that plants grown with recycled CO2 have the same health and yield as plants grown with the commercially sourced CO2 that the Clinic has trucked in from the East Coast.

Zach Engel, operations director for the Clinic, says that he believes Clinic staffers were the first marijuana cultivators in the country to use CO2 born in the same fermentation tanks as ales to…

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