For years, the Yurok Tribe has battled against illegal trespass grows damaging the environment on tribal lands.

For the past five years, a team of local law enforcement and government agencies working under the handle “Operation Yurok,” has labored to eradicate trespass grows and restore the tribe’s land to its natural splendor.

The video above, which the tribe released today, shows one of the latest Operation Yurok busts performed in July.

The trespass grow seen in the video was located near Johnson’s Road, and had numerous environmental violations, including illegally cut-down trees and water diverted from a nearby spring-fed creek.

The Yurok Tribe reported on Facebook that 4,000 plants have been eradicated on tribal lands this year — a record low that the tribe attributes to the work being done through Operation Yurok.

Read more from the Yurok Tribe below:

The illegal marijuana growing operation, located in an extremely remote part of the reservation, was eradicated during this year’s Operation Yurok. The Yurok Public Safety Department-led Operation is an annual endeavor that aims to stop environmentally destructive, largescale cannabis cultivation on Tribal lands.

This particular site occupied a formerly tanoak/Doug fir dominated forest near Johnson’s Rd. The grading and clear-cut, conducted on a slope close to the Klamath River, were performed without authorization. Those responsible were also illegally diverting water from a spring-fed creek, which empties into the Klamath. The gravity-fed irrigation system was comprised of an approximately half-mile long pipe, running from the site up to a hand-made dam on the stream. The PVC pipe had several leaks that were emitting water 24-hours a day. 

The 2017 Operation Yurok resulted in the removal of approximately 4,000 plants, the fewest since the law enforcement undertaking began five years ago. The decline in plant numbers, down from 70,000 at the peak, is a clear indicator of the progress that is being made toward putting an end to the kind of rampant ecological destruction featured in this video. All illicit drugs, including marijuana, are illegal on the reservation. If you’d like to learn more about Operation Yurok, please read this LA Times story -