Legalizing marijuana can lead to increased use of the drug, according to a French study that looked at consumption levels in two US states and Uruguay in the midst of a debate over France’s narcotics laws.
The study conducted by France’s National Institute of Higher Security and Justice Studies and the French Observatory for Drugs and Drug Addiction examined data from Washington and Colorado, which in 2012 became the first two US states to legalize marijuana for recreational use.
Like several US studies on the subject it noted that legalization in the states had not increased marijuana use among teenagers, “which nonetheless remains at a high level.”
Among adults, however, marijuana use had increased, particularly among over-25s, the French researchers found.
But in Uruguay, which in July became the first country to legalise marijuana nationwide, “all the indicators of use have risen”, including among teens, the study showed.
In the two American states,