You think your hometown smokes much cannabis? Well, you may be right, but did you ever wonder how it ranks worldwide? Now you need to wonder no more. Some researchers with a lot of time on their hands have compiled the data and made a list of which cities smoke the most in metric tonnage (thanks, people at Seedo).
Surprisingly, legalization seems to have little to do with how much cannabis gets smoked. Out of the top five cities, only two of them have some form of legal marijuana, and it’s only kinda legal in one of those.
We’re not exactly sure what the determining factor is in a city’s weed consumption. It could be that they’re not a very happy place to live, which would make them want to smoke. Or it could be that they’re unusually happy places to live, which would make them want to smoke. Don’t know. All we can do is count it down from five.
- Cairo, Egypt
Via Flickr user Simon Matzinger
Cannabis is most definitely not legal in Egypt, but that didn’t stop its residents from consuming 32.59 metric tons of the stuff last year. As far as cannabis tolerance, the website We Be High puts the city at a 3 out of 5, so right in the middle.
In the ancient city, possession is prosecutable and can carry lengthy jail sentences, but police don’t put marijuana enforcement high on their list. According to WBH, “It’s considerably hard to be caught with hash or weed within Cairo. There are no worries of cops if you happen to be driving down the road with a joint in hand as long as there are no road-block… Many cops won’t even bother you especially if you are a foreigner.”
- Los Angeles, California, USA
Via Flickr user Giuseppe Milo
Though California is likely soon to become the largest legal cannabis market in the world, its flagship city is only the fourth highest cannabis consumer on the planet, and the second highest in the United States. Last year, Angelinos inhaled or ingested 36.06 metric tons of cannabis.
Those in Los Angeles who want to can still claim some bragging rights, though, as the three cities who beat it out in terms of metric tons consumed have much, much bigger populations, so LA still has them beat per capita.
- New Delhi, India
Via Flickr user Christian Haugen
New Delhi’s 22 million residents (and their visitors) went through 38.26 metric tons of cannabis last year. Flower and hash are illegal in India, but another form of cannabis product which has not caught on much abroad is legal there, and accounts for a large portion of their consumption.
Bhang, an ancient cannabis drink, is used recreationally and also in Hindu festivals (beats wine and bread, Christians, not that it’s a competition).
- Karachi, Pakistan
Via Flickr user No Real Name
Weed is totally illegal in Pakistan, but you wouldn’t know it from the 41.95 metric tons of it Karachi took in last year. Like Egypt, Pakistan has strict anti-cannabis laws on the books, but these are apparently not heavily enforced by authorities.
- New York, New York, USA
Via Flickr user Kevin Dooley
The city that never sleeps must at least have take a weed nap now and then. How else could survive consuming 77.44 metric tons of cannabis last year, a number which makes them champion of the world?
New York City also has that familiar harsh penalties, light on enforcement policy. People smoke it right out on the damn street, and delivery services are common. I guess the police just have better things to do, like get high themselves.
Lead photo via Flickr user Samantha Cohen