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article imageUN Report — Cannabis use soars 40 percent in Canada

By Karen Graham     Jul 2, 2019 in World
The United Nations‘ latest world drug report shows more Canadians started using cannabis each year in the lead-up to the drug’s legalization for recreational use.
According to the United Nations 2019 World Drug Report, there was a 40 percent increase in cannabis usage in Canada between 2013 and 2017, which it attributes to a decrease in the perception of risk around cannabis use and the national debate around legalization.
The increase in usage was more pronounced in adults over the age of 20 and actually declined among young people age 19 and below. The report also showed that cannabis use was relatively stable at 9.1 percent between 2004 and 2011 — rising incrementally starting in 2013.
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UN WDR 2019
Interestingly, despite the report saying that marijuana is the most widely used drug in the world, only 3.8 percent of the global population aged between 15 and 64 years old was said to have consumed cannabis at least once in 2017. That global estimate is based on 188 million cannabis consumers is relatively flat percentage-wise between 2007 and 2017, after rising from being 3.4 percent in 1998, according to the report.
The low global use rate is due to the low use of the drug in Asia, at about two percent, and India, at just a little over three percent. Cannabis is also the only drug-type plant that is grown in all countries across the globe, unlike other plant-based drugs, which is concentrated in a limited number of countries.
The report cited Health Canada data that showed the province of British Columbia had the highest rates of consumption among the provinces, at 23.4 percent.
According to CTV News Canada, the UN report states that it is still too early to fully access the impact of the legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada and in some U.S. states. Early trends are worth monitoring, says the report, especially the persistence of organized crime groups profiting from the drug.
More about Canada, cannabis use, un report, Increase, Britishcolumbia
 
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