Can’t Smoke That [Canadian] Car — ‘Kestrel’ Hemp Car Available By Next Year
Most people should know by now that industrial hemp (very different from marijuana, the medicinal hemp) is a wonder plant; it wouldn’t do a stoner any good to smoke it, but its fibers can be made into more than 25,000 different products, including paper, fabric, and now even automobiles.
Canadian company Motive Industries Inc. is planning on rolling out the Kestrel, a bio-composite hybrid electric car made from hemp and other natural and synthetic fibers, in late 2012 or in 2013. The body is made from impact-resistant hemp mats manufactured by a company that is owned by the Canadian government.
Widespread use of industrial hemp would solve many environmental problems. It grows quickly and easily, just about anywhere, without need of pesticides or herbicides (unlike cotton), and it yields four times the fiber of forests per acre (let’s keep our trees for other things!).
Fabric made from hemp is stronger, more absorbent, and more mildew-resistant than cotton.
Paper made from hemp doesn’t need much bleaching, and hemp fibers are so much longer and stronger than wood fibers that hemp paper can be recycled several times more than wood-based paper.
The U.S. government can’t tell the difference between marijuana and industrial hemp, so it’s effectively illegal to grow industrial hemp. Hemp was grown commercially in the U.S.A. until the 1950′s, when the government placed such tax burdens on it that it was no longer feasible to grow it here.
I wonder if someone could be arrested for driving a Kestrel in the U.S. …