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A spatial analysis of green teams: a tactical response to marijuana production in British Columbia


  • Aili Malm
  • George Tita



Over a period of 4 years (1997–2000), British Columbia (BC) experienced tremendous growth in the illicit production and distribution of domestically grown marijuana. By the close of 2000, each policing jurisdiction in BC had adopted a particular policy in response to grow operation proliferation. In summary, four policy responses were noted. First, some maintained the status quo wherein enforcement of police initiated investigations and citizens’ tips continued, but with no additional resources specifically dedicated to grow operations. Second, some jurisdictions suspended the majority of investigation and enforcement of grow operations. Third, some agencies implemented or reinforced existing resource intensive drug squads, which focused on trafficking, sales and production of all types of drugs. Finally, some of the jurisdictions formed specialized tactical units known as “green teamsâ€\x9D that focused solely on the enforcement of marijuana production. In this paper, we evaluate the effectiveness of green teams using a Geographic Information System (GIS) and difference-in-difference estimates. The results indicate that green teams decrease grow operations within their target area without significant displacement to surrounding areas. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLP 2006

Suggested Citation

  • Aili Malm & George Tita, 2006. "A spatial analysis of green teams: a tactical response to marijuana production in British Columbia," Policy Sciences, Springer;Society of Policy Sciences, vol. 39(4), pages 361-377, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:policy:v:39:y:2006:i:4:p:361-377
    DOI: 10.1007/s11077-006-9029-0

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    References listed on IDEAS

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