In a study published this week in the journal Economic Inquiry, researchers found that the legalization of adult-use cannabis reduced opioid overdose deaths by 21%.
Researchers found that ‘recreational marijuana access significantly decreases opioid mortality.’
The study, carried out by economists at the University of Massachusetts and Colorado State University, found that legalization had “particularly pronounced effects for synthetic opioids” such as fentanyl.
“Our principal finding is that recreational marijuana access significantly decreases opioid mortality, with the most pronounced effects for synthetic opioids,” the researchers concluded. The effect “stems primarily from access via dispensaries rather than legality per se.”