Marijuana in the USA – level 3

16-01-2015 15:00

It’s now been one year since the US state of Colorado launched the world’s first market for recreational marijuana, sparking mass controversy.

The cannabis you can buy in Colorado and Washington is regulated and taxed. It’s thought sales of the drug could have reached 400 million dollars in 2014.

You can now buy food products such as Dixie Rolls, white chocolate peppermint and truffles all containing marijuana, which some claim has helped boost the local economy.

“Our real estate is booming right now — five million square feet of commercial lease space. That’s the essence that we’re seeing that this industry’s had. Imagine if that was vacant property!”

But critics argue the sale of the drug could lead to long-term addiction and have negative health effects.

“The societal costs are far greater. The industries themselves get wealthy. They make a lot of money, but the burden falls on families, falls on employers, falls on our health care system, falls on our schools…”

As the industry continues to grow with increasing competition for medical marijuana and the black market, it’s unclear if it will all go to pot.

Difficult words: launch (to start something), mass (a lot), controversy (when people have strong opinions about something), cannabis (scientific name for marijuana), spark (to cause), Dixie Roll (a sweet covered with chocolate), truffle (a soft sweet made of chocolate mixture), claim (to say), boost (to help), economy (the money of a region), real estate (property consisting of land or buildings), boom (to be successful), lease (to let somebody use something for money), essence (the result), vacant (empty), wealthy (rich), go to pot (to become useless/ also, “pot” is slang for marijuana).



News in Levels is designed to teach you 3000 words in English. Please follow the instructions

How to improve your English with News in Levels: 


  1. Do the test at Test Languages.
  2. Go to your level. Go to Level 1 if you know 1-1000 words. Go to Level 2 if you know 1000-2000 words. Go to Level 3 if you know 2000-3000 words.


  1. Read two news articles every day.
  2. Read the news articles from the day before and check if you remember all new words.


  1. Listen to the news from today and read the text at the same time.
  2. Listen to the news from today without reading the text.


  1. Answer the question under today’s news and write the answer in the comments.


  1. Choose one person from the Skype section.
  2. Talk with this person. You can answer questions from Speak in Levels.


Stock images by Depositphotos