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Germany’s Bundestag sets higher cannabis limit in road traffic

Two months after Germany decriminalized the use of cannabis, the country’s lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, raised the limit for tetrahydrocannabinol to 3.5 per milliliter of blood for drivers.

According to experts, the new limit is comparable to the effect of a blood alcohol content of 0.2. It is, however, difficult for cannabis consumers to know when this value has been reached.

“This is very different from alcohol intake, where you can estimate very well how much alcohol you have in your blood based on the quantity,” toxicologist Martin Juebner told broadcaster WDR.

The opposition parties in the Bundestag rejected the new limit and accused the government of ignoring the police’s warnings against increasing the previously much stricter limit. CDU politician Florian Mueller spoke of a “black day for road safety.”

According to a survey conducted by the TUEV association in May, almost two out of three German citizens expect the legalization of cannabis to have a negative impact on road safety.

Since April, adults in Germany have been allowed to possess 25 grams of cannabis in public places. The private cultivation of up to three cannabis plants and cultivation in the form of associations has also been legalized.

“With legalization, we are taking cannabis out of the taboo zone,” Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach said during the parliamentary debate in February. The step was taken to “combat the flourishing black market as well as associated crime and unsafe admixtures.”

Critics warn that even moderate consumption of cannabis poses health risks such as addiction, an increased risk of heart attacks, a risk of psychosis, and permanent brain damage among young people. ■

Famagusta Gazette