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United Nations: Three-Quarters Of World’s Illicit Drug Users Consume Cannabis


united nations smoking marijuanaVienna, Austria: Cannabis is consumed by an estimated 75 percent of all the world’s illicit drug users, making it the most widely used illicit substance in the world, according to the United Nation’s 2012 World Drug Report.

Of the world’s estimated 300 million (6.6 percent of the global population) annual illicit drug consumers, some 225 million (5 percent) use cannabis, the report found. Authors concluded, “Cannabis is the world’s most widely used illicit substance … and consumption is stable.”

In 2010 (the most recent year for which international data was available), marijuana consumption was most prevalent in Australia and New Zealand. The United States and Canada tied for second among nations with the greatest levels of marijuana use, followed by Spain, France and Italy. The report also found that cannabis has become the leading cash crop in Afghanistan, surpassing opium poppy production.

“[T]here are currently no signs that the popularity of cannabis is going to fall, overall, and it is most likely going to remain the most widely used illegal substance,” the report concluded.

Source: NORML - make a donation


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Johnny Green


  1. Johnny oneye on

    SATIVEX ? international cannabis factory owned and run by US interest?

    the same United Nations that watches millions of people starve while outlawing 1 of the most sustainable source of

    medicine food.,fiber and feul ,

  2. Johnny oneye on

    After taking the oil treatment I was able to completely eliminate any pain killers.
    My friend is a quadra palegic and he has been on the oil for 4 days and his blood prussure has stabilized for the first time in many years No mo pills!
    Didnt them UN find a bunch of cocaine and arrest some employees recently?

  3. I can agree with the 75% estimate. I would even venture to say that cannabis use has also supplanted the use of other drugs.

    I have read that cannabis is a gateway to sobriety in that it can be used by people addicted to harmful substances to ease or eliminate their cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Cannabis also diminishes the desire to use other drugs. This make sense because the endocannabinoid system moves toward a state of homeostasis (balanced wellbeing) under cannabis consumption (eating, preferably, than inhalation).

    Caution, this comes from the U.N. Lately the U.S. U.N. envoy filed a formal complaint that other U.N. members were drinking too much on the job, making it difficult to get things done.

  4. It’d be nice if the UN would just remove cannabis users from the “illicit drug” consumer columns. I would like to see cannabis consumption stats with other comparable items, like beer, aspirin, wine, etc. Grouping us with much more nefarious substances isn’t doing anybody any good, except for private prison corporations.

    How about the UN shows stats that say 37% of astronomers use cannabis (I totally made this up, but Carl Sagan…), or 89% of the musicians you have in your MP3 collection use cannabis (including me: http://www.sjatr.com !), or stats that show how peaceful people are when consuming cannabis, etc etc.

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