20°C / 22°C
  • Mon
  • 19°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 16°C
  • 12°C
  • Wed
  • 22°C
  • 13°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 12°C
  • Fri
  • 22°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 24°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 26°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 24°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 26°C
  • 17°C
  • Fri
  • 24°C
  • 17°C
  • Sat
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 18°C
  • 14°C
  • Wed
  • 24°C
  • 14°C
  • Thu
  • 25°C
  • 14°C
  • Fri
  • 24°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 19°C
  • 13°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 13°C
  • Thu
  • 25°C
  • 13°C
  • Fri
  • 23°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 26°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 18°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 18°C
  • Wed
  • 21°C
  • 18°C
  • Thu
  • 22°C
  • 19°C
  • Fri
  • 23°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 26°C
  • 18°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 22°C
  • 16°C
  • Thu
  • 22°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 24°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 23°C
  • 18°C
  • Mon
  • 32°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 31°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 30°C
  • 17°C
  • Thu
  • 32°C
  • 18°C
  • Fri
  • 31°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 22°C
  • 12°C
  • Mon
  • 27°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 27°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 26°C
  • 17°C
  • Thu
  • 28°C
  • 17°C
  • Fri
  • 23°C
  • 18°C
  • Sat
  • 21°C
  • 12°C
  • Mon
  • 20°C
  • 17°C
  • Tue
  • 20°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 26°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 28°C
  • 14°C
  • Fri
  • 25°C
  • 16°C
  • Sat
  • 27°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 27°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 13°C
  • Wed
  • 24°C
  • 13°C
  • Thu
  • 26°C
  • 11°C
  • Fri
  • 25°C
  • 13°C
  • Sat
  • 29°C
  • 15°C
  • Mon
  • 19°C
  • 15°C
  • Tue
  • 18°C
  • 15°C
  • Wed
  • 25°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 15°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 15°C
  • Sat
  • 25°C
  • 14°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 12°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 16°C
  • Fri
  • 27°C
  • 17°C
  • Sat
  • 23°C
  • 15°C

US to allow more marijuana research - sources

California & 8 other states have recreational or medical marijuana proposals headed for their 2016 ballots.

Cannabis indica. Picture: Freeimages.com

SEATTLE - The US government will announce on Thursday that it will allow more research into marijuana but has rejected requests to relax the classification of the substance as a dangerous, highly addictive drug with no medical use, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.

The decision is the Drug Enforcement Administration's response to a 2011 petition by two former state governors who had urged federal agencies to re-classify marijuana as a drug with accepted medical uses, the two sources said on Wednesday. They requested anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

The DEA declined to comment. However earlier on Wednesday, the agency had sent emails, a copy of which was reviewed by Reuters, to parties that had expressed an interest in the matter, saying it would be making "important announcements regarding marijuana related topics" on Thursday.

The Food and Drug Administration did not respond immediately to requests for comment.

For decades, marijuana has been classified as a "Schedule I" drug with "no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse," on par with heroin. The government has repeatedly rejected appeals over the years to reclassify marijuana. Loosening that definition could encourage scientific study of a drug that is being used to treat diseases in several US states despite little proof of its effectiveness.

Twenty-five states have sanctioned some forms of marijuana use for medical purposes. Four states - Alaska, Washington, Oregon, and Colorado and the District of Columbia have gone even further, allowing its recreational use for adults.

California and eight other states have recreational or medical marijuana proposals headed for their 2016 ballots.

A drug can be reclassified through congressional legislation or a formal scheduling petition process that involves medical and scientific evaluation by the FDA and DEA.

The DEA only allows marijuana for federally sanctioned research to be cultivated at a garden at the University of Mississippi, an operation overseen by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Cannabis advocates have long argued that this arrangement, and the labelling of marijuana as among "the most dangerous drugs" under the Controlled Substances Act, has sharply limited the supply available for research.

The sources said the federal government would pave the way on Thursday for increased research, possibly with marijuana supplies from outside the University of Mississippi.

"This is a good day for science," said Kevin Sabet, president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, a group that opposes legalisation. "This shows that the federal government is flexible on legitimate research but is nowhere near wanting to legalize marijuana."

Comments

EWN welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

- Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
- Sexism
- Homophobia
- Religious intolerance
- Cyber bullying
- Hate speech
- Derogatory language
- Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the EWN community a safe and welcoming space for all.

EWN reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

EWN is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

comments powered by Disqus