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Contact: John Dell’Osso, 415-464-5135
On September 17, 2007, National Park Service Rangers and the Marin County Sheriff’s Office entered a marijuana grow site on Point Reyes National Seashore administered lands. The law enforcement effort confiscated approximately 3,500 marijuana plants with an estimated street value of approximately $9 million. The growing site was located on Bolinas Ridge off of Platform Bridge Road.
Last year, over 22,000 marijuana plants were removed from parklands in West Marin with a street value of over $48 million. Additionally, the Seashore spent over $100,000 in clean-up costs and extensive resource damage occurred in the areas too.
“Since the last removal of illegal marijuana in the summer of 2006, Point Reyes rangers have been on the alert for more growing sites and suspicious activity. Our goal is to do surveillance on every major drainage to determine whether there is any additional illegal activity on park lands. We are working overtime to fully eliminate the growing of marijuana on park and adjacent public lands,” stated Don Neubacher, Superintendent of Point Reyes National Seashore.
“We are doing our best to ensure the safety of park visitors and staff and eliminate the resource damage caused by this illegal growing activity.” stated Colin Smith, Chief Ranger at Point Reyes National Seashore.
Lieutenant Scott Anderson of the Marin County Sheriff’s Office stated, “We have worked well with the National Park Service and will continue to work cooperatively to eliminate this illegal activity and resource damage to park lands.”
A comprehensive resource assessment will be conducted after the area is secured and all of the plants are removed. Similar to other sites last year, the area’s native vegetation was damaged and water systems were constructed. Growers are diverting streams that contain threatened species of fish, using harmful pesticides and bringing the presence of violence to these natural areas.