Last night David Owen called me and said he wanted to speak out about the dangers of marijuana vaping products.

Owen is one of the organizers behind Legalize ND, a citizen group which backed a ballot measure to legalize recreational marijuana in North Dakota last year. His group is readying another proposal for the ballot in the 2020 cycle. But last night Owen was concerned about people getting hurt.

“Before 2019, not a single person had died of marijuana use or overdose, and as of today that statement remains true,” Owen told me. “Unfortunately there is a new delivery mechanism for marijuana, that of a vapor cartridge, which introduces its own toxic chemical, Vitamin E acetate. Without getting overly technical, when the Vitamin E acetate vapor is inhaled, it causes lung tissue scarring and in cases of chronic use, hospitalization or perhaps death.”

“Due to the recent report from the Grand Forks Herald, with nearly 400 of these black-market cartridges being found in the City of Grand Forks, in 1 vehicle, we can no longer bury our heads in the sand and pretend it’s not happening in our state. This is real, this is dangerous, and it needs to be resolved,” he added.

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