In a report published last week, Statistics Canada revealed new results for the county’s Canadian Tobacco, Alcohol, and Drugs Survey.

The data, collected in 2015 from a sampling of over 15,000 Canadians over the age of 15, looked at the tobacco, alcohol and drug use in the country.

The latest numbers for cannabis use come as the federal government moves to create some type of legalized system for recreational users.

The data shows the number of people who admitted to using cannabis int he past year rose from 11 per cent in 2013 to 12 per cent in 2015.  According to Statistics Canada population estimates for 2015, the numbers show roughly 3.6 million Canadians, over 15, used cannabis in the last year.

Almost three quarters of this group (72 per cent or 2.6 million) reported using cannabis in the last three months and more than a quarter (33 per cent or 839,000) said they used cannabis on a daily or almost daily frequency.

The data showed that men (15 per cent or 2.2 million) are using, or admitting to the use, of cannabis more often than women (10 per cent or 1.4 million), but female use of cannabis has risen sharply from 7 per cent in 2013 to 10 per cent in 2015.

Of those who said they had used it in the last year, 24 per cent (around 835,000) reported that it was for medical purposes. The survey did not gather information on how medical users obtain their cannabis.

The median age of beginning the use of cannabis was 17 years old for both men and women. Cannabis use was found to be higher among those aged 15–19 (21 per cent or 426,000) and adults aged 20–24 (30 per cent or 715,000) compared to those over 25 (10 per cent or 2.5 million).

This was the first year of the survey that asked if cannabis was used with a vapourizer. Twenty-eight per cent (about one million) of those that used cannabis is the last year said they had used a vapourizer to do so.

The results also showed a breakdown of cannabis use by province, showing past-year use as high as 17 per cent (667,000 people) in British Columbia to 7 per cent (8,000) in Prince Edward Island.

statistics canada 2015 cannabis use