Bringing marijuana to Burning Man? It’s still illegal on U.S. land​

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Courtesy of Globe and Mail

Nevada has legalized recreational marijuana, but it’s still not OK for tens of thousands of Burning Man fans to light up this year.

Voters in the state passed a marijuana legalization measure in 2016, and sales began at retail stores on July 1.

But consumption is allowed only in private and even possession remains illegal on federal lands, including the stretch of Black Rock Desert managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management where the festival began Sunday and continues through the weekend about 161 kilometres north of Reno.

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BLM officials say a pot possession arrest can result in a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. But federal agents made no arrests for any crimes last year at Burning Man, or the year before.

This year, authorities will follow state law letting people possess up to one 1 ounce (28 grams) of pot. Discovery of more than an ounce of marijuana or more than an eighth-ounce of marijuana concentrate can result in a citation or arrest.

“If they show up with a hay bale of marijuana, it’s definitely going to be more than a citation. It’s going to be up to the discretion of the officer,” Sheriff Jerry Allen said.

Diggy Shakes lights the art installation Efflorescence, Aug. 28, 2017.

Diggy Shakes lights the art installation Efflorescence.

JIM URQUHART/REUTERS

A participant rides a swing, Aug. 28, 2017.

A participant rides a swing.

JIM URQUHART/REUTERS

Participants explore the playa, Aug. 28, 2017.

Participants explore the playa.

JIM URQUHART/REUTERS

Kai Rey of Sebastopol, California dances alone amidst the Field of Fairies art project, Aug. 29, 2017.

Kai Rey of Sebastopol, Calif., dances alone amidst the Field of Fairies art project.

JIM BOURG/REUTERS

Participants perform shibari rope scene during a driving desert dust storm inside the heart of the Identity Awareness - Family art project created by artist Shane Pitzer, Aug. 29, 2017.

Participants perform shibari rope scene during a driving desert dust storm inside the heart of the Identity Awareness – Family art project created by artist Shane Pitzer.

JIM BOURG/REUTERS

Participants march in costumes, Aug. 29, 2017.

Participants march in costumes.

JIM URQUHART/REUTERS

Two women escort a mutant vehicle on the playa, Aug. 28, 2017.

Two women escort a mutant vehicle on the playa.

JIM URQUHART/REUTERS

Kylie Webb spins inside a metal hoop on a roller disco floor, Aug. 28, 2017.

Kylie Webb spins inside a metal hoop on a roller disco floor.

JIM BOURG/REUTERS

Cole Wardley plays the Baby Grand piano inside the Heardt art project, a metal heart created by five artists from Prague in the Czech Republic.

Cole Wardley plays the Baby Grand piano inside the Heardt art project, a metal heart created by five artists from Prague in the Czech Republic.

Jim Bourg/REUTERS

Burning Man participant Marshall Mosher from Atlanta surfs through the desert dust on a motorized surfboard on wheels past Center Camp.

Burning Man participant Marshall Mosher from Atlanta surfs through the desert dust on a motorized surfboard past Center Camp.

JIM BOURG/REUTERs

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