Catching the Growth of the Cannabis Industry
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Catching the Growth of the Cannabis Industry

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The following content is sponsored by eToro

Cannabis future infographic

Catching the Growth of the Cannabis Industry

The global stance on cannabis is changing rapidly.

With a wave of medical and recreational legalization occurring, there are now 70 countries with some form of legalization. As billions of investment dollars pour in, the cannabis industry finds itself entering a brand new chapter.

This infographic from eToro provides key information for investors on how the global cannabis market is making significant strides forward.

The World’s Legal Cannabis Markets

In just a few short years since legalization momentum kicked off, societal views on cannabis have changed tremendously. Examples of this include:

  • Dispensaries being deemed essential businesses during the pandemic.
  • Uber announcing its intention to incorporate cannabis deliveries.
  • Malta becoming the first country to legalize cannabis in Europe for recreational use.

This shifting dynamic is part of why the global cannabis industry now generates over $20 billion in legal recreational sales on an annual basis.

The title for the world’s largest cannabis market belongs to the U.S.—generating more than $16 billion in sales in 2020. However, their regulatory landscape is also one of the trickiest to navigate, as federal legalization has yet to occur despite over 30 states having legalized cannabis in some form.

While this unique situation leaves a lot of potential money off the table, it also provides lots of potential upside for the industry should legalization trends persist. In 2022, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Delaware are considered likely to legalize, which would take the small tally of states without any form of legal cannabis from 14 to 11.

Here’s how cannabis sales figures compare in various regions around the world:

Country/RegionLegal Cannabis Markets by Sales in 2020 ($B)
U.S.$16.27B
Canada$1.84B
Europe$0.28B
Latin America$0.17B
Oceania$0.05B

This multi-billion dollar market is supported by a robust supply chain consisting of growers, retailers, support systems, and biotechnology companies. Each will become more vital, as the industry continues to grow and elevate to new highs. In 2020, consumer spend crossed past $20 billion, and will spike towards $37 billion by 2023.

But that’s just the beginning of the growth story.

Key Trends to Watch

Compared to other industries, cannabis has had a very slow start. For decades, innovation has been relatively idle given factors like prohibition which has lasted for nearly 90 years.

But nowadays, a swath of new cannabis products and technologies are hitting dispensary shelves.

For instance, the Californian market saw 7,000 additional new products in 2020 compared to 2019. Put another way, there was an average of 19 new products in dispensary shops, daily.

What’s more, some of these innovations can be seen in product popularity ranks:

Product CategoryEstimated Sales 2021 Estimated Sales 2022% of Sales 2022
Flower$10.9B$14.9B47.8%
Vape Pens$5.1B$6.5B20.9%
Edibles$2.3B$3.0B9.6%
Pre-rolls$2.2B$2.8B9.0%
Concentrates$2.2B$2.8B9.0%
Tinctures & Sublinguals$292M$347M1.1%
Beverages$236M$296M1.0%
Topicals$240M$289M0.9%
Capsules$171M$221M0.7%

Flower continues to dominate as the traditional method to consume. However, non-combustible methods like edibles and vape products have gained traction more recently, with vapes expected to see a 30% rise in sales in 2022. In addition, CBD products are growing fast in popularity, especially amongst women who make up 60% of CBD sales.

In the years to come, thousands of additional new products and technologies will pop up, suggesting that product preferences may continue to adapt.

A Bright Future For Cannabis

The cannabis industry’s momentum has stirred up investor interest across the board. This can be seen through the average size of cannabis equity capital raises, which has grown 165% from $7.5 million in 2020 to $19.1 million in 2021. Momentum can also be seen through the cannabis stock indexes, which are showing signs of recovery.

But where does cannabis go from here? Things are moving rapidly, and by 2024, the global cannabis space is expected to be worth a massive $103 billion. Europe and North America will make up the largest components of this market, valued at $39.1 billion and $37.9 billion, respectively. But other regions are also forecasted to demonstrate some impressive numbers.

Here’s what the forecasted 2024 global legal cannabis market will break down:

RegionProjected Market Value 2024
Europe$39.1B
North America$37.9B
Asia$12.5B
Latin America$9.1B
Oceania$2.7B
Africa$2.6B

At over $100 billion, the cannabis industry’s market value can potentially eclipse that of online betting and gaming.

How Can Investors Take Part?

eToro’s CannabisCare Smart Portfolio* gives investors direct access to the growing cannabis market.

Curated by experienced and proven investment teams, the thematic portfolio offers exposure to a broad range companies invested in cannabis, with no management fees.

*Your capital is at risk.
Smart Portfolios is a portfolio management product, provided by eToro Europe Ltd., which is authorized and regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission.

Smart Portfolios should not be considered as exchange traded funds, nor as hedge funds.

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Ranked: Emissions per Capita of the Top 30 U.S. Investor-Owned Utilities

Roughly 25% of all GHG emissions come from electricity production. See how the top 30 IOUs rank by emissions per capita.

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Emissions per Capita of the Top 30 U.S. Investor-Owned Utilities

Approximately 25% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) come from electricity generation.

Subsequently, this means investor-owned utilities (IOUs) will have a crucial role to play around carbon reduction initiatives. This is particularly true for the top 30 IOUs, where almost 75% of utility customers get their electricity from.

This infographic from the National Public Utilities Council ranks the largest IOUs by emissions per capita. By accounting for the varying customer bases they serve, we get a more accurate look at their green energy practices. Here’s how they line up.

Per Capita Rankings

The emissions per capita rankings for the top 30 investor-owned utilities have large disparities from one another.

Totals range from a high of 25.8 tons of CO2 per customer annually to a low of 0.5 tons.

UtilityEmissions Per Capita (CO2 tons per year)Total Emissions (M)
TransAlta25.816.3
Vistra22.497.0
OGE Energy21.518.2
AES Corporation19.849.9
Southern Company18.077.8
Evergy14.623.6
Alliant Energy14.414.1
DTE Energy14.229.0
Berkshire Hathaway Energy14.057.2
Entergy13.840.5
WEC Energy13.522.2
Ameren12.831.6
Duke Energy12.096.6
Xcel Energy11.943.3
Dominion Energy11.037.8
Emera11.016.6
PNM Resources10.55.6
PPL Corporation10.428.7
American Electric Power9.250.9
Consumers Energy8.716.1
NRG Energy8.229.8
Florida Power and Light8.041.0
Portland General Electric7.66.9
Fortis Inc.6.112.6
Avangrid5.111.6
PSEG3.99.0
Exelon3.834.0
Consolidated Edison1.66.3
Pacific Gas and Electric0.52.6
Next Era Energy Resources01.1

PNM Resources data is from 2019, all other data is as of 2020

Let’s start by looking at the higher scoring IOUs.

TransAlta

TransAlta emits 25.8 tons of CO2 emissions per customer, the largest of any utility on a per capita basis. Altogether, the company’s 630,000 customers emit 16.3 million metric tons. On a recent earnings call, its management discussed clear intent to phase out coal and grow their renewables mix by doubling their renewables fleet. And so far it appears they’ve been making good on their promise, having shut down the Canadian Highvale coal mine recently.

Vistra

Vistra had the highest total emissions at 97 million tons of CO2 per year and is almost exclusively a coal and gas generator. However, the company announced plans for 60% reductions in CO2 emissions by 2030 and is striving to be carbon neutral by 2050. As the highest total emitter, this transition would make a noticeable impact on total utility emissions if successful.

Currently, based on their 4.3 million customers, Vistra sees per capita emissions of 22.4 tons a year. The utility is a key electricity provider for Texas, ad here’s how their electricity mix compares to that of the state as a whole:

Energy SourceVistraState of Texas
Gas63%52%
Coal29%15%
Nuclear6%9%
Renewables1%24%
Oil1%0%

Despite their ambitious green energy pledges, for now only 1% of Vistra’s electricity comes from renewables compared to 24% for Texas, where wind energy is prospering.

Based on those scores, the average customer from some of the highest emitting utility groups emit about the same as a customer from each of the bottom seven, who clearly have greener energy practices. Let’s take a closer look at emissions for some of the bottom scoring entities.

Utilities With The Greenest Energy Practices

Groups with the lowest carbon emission scores are in many ways leaders on the path towards a greener future.

Exelon

Exelon emits only 3.8 tons of CO2 emissions per capita annually and is one of the top clean power generators across the Americas. In the last decade they’ve reduced their GHG emissions by 18 million metric tons, and have recently teamed up with the state of Illinois through the Clean Energy Jobs Act. Through this, Exelon will receive $700 million in subsidies as it phases out coal and gas plants to meet 2030 and 2045 targets.

Consolidated Edison

Consolidated Edison serves nearly 4 million customers with a large chunk coming from New York state. Altogether, they emit 1.6 tons of CO2 emissions per capita from their electricity generation.

The utility group is making notable strides towards a sustainable future by expanding its renewable projects and testing higher capacity limits. In addition, they are often praised for their financial management and carry the title of dividend aristocrat, having increased their dividend for 47 years and counting. In fact, this is the longest out of any utility company in the S&P 500.

A Sustainable Tomorrow

Altogether, utilities will have a pivotal role to play in decarbonization efforts. This is particularly true for the top 30 U.S. IOUs, who collectively serve 60 million Americans, or one-fifth of the U.S. population.

Ultimately, this means a unique moment for utilities is emerging. As the transition toward cleaner energy continues and various groups push to achieve their goals, all eyes will be on utilities to deliver.

The National Public Utilities Council is the go-to resource to learn how utilities can lead in the path towards decarbonization.

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The Road to Decarbonization: How Asphalt is Affecting the Planet

The U.S. alone generates ∼12 million tons of asphalt shingles tear-off waste and installation scrap every year and more than 90% of it is dumped into landfills.

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Road to Decarbonization - How Asphalt is Affecting the Planet

The Road to Decarbonization: How Asphalt is Affecting the Planet

Asphalt, also known as bitumen, has various applications in the modern economy, with annual demand reaching 110 million tons globally.

Until the 20th century, natural asphalt made from decomposed plants accounted for the majority of asphalt production. Today, most asphalt is refined from crude oil.

This graphic, sponsored by Northstar Clean Technologies, shows how new technologies to reuse and recycle asphalt can help protect the environment.

The Impact of Climate Change

Pollution from vehicles is expected to decline as electric vehicles replace internal combustion engines.

But pollution from asphalt could actually increase in the next decades because of rising temperatures in some parts of the Earth. When subjected to extreme temperatures, asphalt releases harmful greenhouse gases (GHG) into the atmosphere.

Emissions from Road Construction (Source) CO2 equivalent (%)
Asphalt 28%
Concrete18%
Excavators and Haulers16%
Trucks13%
Crushing Plant 10%
Galvanized Steel 6%
Reinforced Steel6%
Plastic Piping 2%
Geotextile1%

Asphalt paved surfaces and roofs make up approximately 45% and 20% of surfaces in U.S. cities, respectively. Furthermore, 75% of single-family detached homes in Canada and the U.S. have asphalt shingles on their roofs.

Reducing the Environmental Impact of Asphalt

Similar to roads, asphalt shingles have oil as the primary component, which is especially harmful to the environment.

Shingles do not decompose or biodegrade. The U.S. alone generates ∼12 million tons of asphalt shingles tear-off waste and installation scrap every year and more than 90% of it is dumped into landfills, the equivalent of 20 million barrels of oil.

But most of it can be reused, rather than taking up valuable landfill space.

Using technology, the primary components in shingles can be repurposed into liquid asphalt, aggregate, and fiber, for use in road construction, embankments, and new shingles.

Providing the construction industry with clean, sustainable processing solutions is also a big business opportunity. Canada alone is a $1.3 billion market for recovering and reprocessing shingles.

Northstar Clean Technologies is the only public company that repurposes 99% of asphalt shingles components that otherwise go to landfills.

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