Massive Eddy County beautification effort proves we are 'Better Together'

‘Better Together’ prompts massive Eddy County beautification effort

Up on C-Hill, the Carlsbad Anti-Drug-Gang Coalition gathered with volunteers to collect bags filled with litter. Along the Pecos River, the XTO Spouses Group and motivated children cleaned up all sorts of items, from a flip flop to a baby bottle and various plastics and syrofoam.

At Brantley Lake, volunteers with Devon Energy spruced up areas along the banks, while along the Black River south of Carlsband, Chevron employees worked alongside officials with the New Mexico Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Eddy County, the American Petroleum Institute and other community stakeholders to build rock erosion control structures.

They were just some of the myriad projects accomplished during a one-week period from Sept. 17-24 as part of Better Together, a National Public Lands Day event.

The BLM Carlsbad Field office partnered with Eddy County and the cities of Artesia and Carlsbad to host the countywide event that aims to beautify the community and foster civic engagement.

As part of Better Together, individuals and groups were encouraged to organize cleanup events throughout Eddy County, and to submit proof of their efforts to be entered into a competition. A “Golden Tire Award” is given to the municipality whose citizens collectively remove the most trash from public spaces.

Volunteers from Devon Energy came out in force to clean up Brantley Lake. The constant water level changes over the past few months had strewn garbage all over the bank and into the vegetation. (Photo courtesy of BLM).

Prior to the competition, the BLM provided photos, GPS coordinates and directions to dump sites throughout Eddy County, but also encouraged citizens and groups to clean up any location in need.

Volunteers removed tires from everywhere from Carlsbad’s alleyways to areas south of Black River Village Road. “The brushland animals will be relieved to have their area back to a more natural state,” according to BLM.

While Carlsbad MainStreet businesses and volunteers got busy cleaning up Downtown, folks from LM Energy were out in various places such as Alkali Lake, where they removed an old car that has been a longtime eyesore.

The nonprofit CEHMM collected a “ridiculous amount of trash” as part of Better Together, including nearly 100 tires.

Special tools were used — the XTO Spouses Group used a kayak to clean up Pecos River, while the Pecos Valley Grotto wore special gear to remove trash from Parks Ranch Cave.

“National Public Lands Day is the nation’s largest single-day volunteer effort for public lands,” Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway pointed out in his regular blog, adding, “Please keep up the good work.”

Here are more photos from Better Together, courtesy of BLM.

Volunteers from LM Energy removed an abandoned boat from public lands. (Photo courtesy of BLM).

J&J Home Care got down to business Saturday morning caring for Eddy County by bringing in 20 bags of trash and 2 blown out tires. (Photo courtesy of BLM)

Plains Pipeline aided the City of Carlsbad in the restoration of memorial plaques around the Riverwalk along the Pecos River. (Photo courtesy of BLM)

BLM Carlsbad Fire Crew and City of Carlsbad workers teamed up to spray invasive brush species as part of an ongoing ecological improvement project to restore land near Six Mile Dam to a healthy ecosystem. (Photo courtesy of BLM)

ConocoPhillips were kept busy working out on Karr Ranch Road. A notorious dump site, Karr Ranch may have been the most trashed site in Eddy County. Just one filled dumpster had enough stuff to furnish a house with things leftover for a nice cluttered garage. (Photo courtesy of BLM)

Carlsbad MainStreet held a cleanup effort in Downtown as part of Better Together. (Photo courtesy of BLM)