Northern Pinal County Superstition Foothills Environmental Stewardship
It is through Self Responsibility, Education, Knowledge and Ownership that we can make a difference, Enforcement is and should be the last resort.
Working together Makes a Difference
Natural Restorations has teamed up with us for cleanups in the areas where Footprints Matter has been working the past 9 years. The first joint team event was on April 30th, 2016. Near the Old Florence Highway and Kelvin Highway. We also teamed up for Surrounding Superior in October of that year. Teaming up with them for our 8th and 9th annual stewardship event was a huge success. And we are pleased to see them team up with us for the 2019 annual event.
Arizona State Land Department; We are proud to report that in the initial areas of Peralta Road the trash dumping is minimal, and the illegal target shooting on the ASLD and leaving shooter trash has decreased due to proper signage, education and enforcement. Areas between Gold Canyon and Queen Valley still have pockets of shooter trash and illegal target shooting activities as well as newly household trash dump issues. We are working with the permittees and ASLD to determine a better course of action for these areas. The permittees have established safety fences on main roads with minimal access points which will minimize access for illegal uses on ASLD.
Tonto National Forest; We are making huge steps in the control of trigger trash in the popular shooting area near and around Hewitt Station. We know this area still has some issues, but we are encouraged that the majority of shooters are utilizing the 'trigger trash only dumpster' that in 2019 is made possible through a grant from Arizona Fish and Game. 48.8 Tons of shooting debris was collected in 2016 and 70.4 tons in 2017 At the 2018 cleanup trash debris was significantly reduced, and we believe the dumpster is allowing individuals to be more responsible. Bold new signage seems to be working in reminding users that to keep the area open they must keep it clean. A second large sign has been installed due to another grant from Resolution Copper.
What can you do? Encourage everyone you know that recreates in our backyard to be responsible. If you see illegal use or littering be sure to make a report. Enforcement of the laws and rules is necessary when irresponsible users continue to trash the desert.
Continued Progress and Success
Over the past few years, we have been working closely with the land owners to determine the best way to educate and steward these lands. Striving for a balance which allows for appropriate multi-use and eliminates over-use issues is challenging. From the beginning, this movement was not about just picking up trash, it has been about educating the users and bringing attention to the illegal dumping activities that were out of hand on lands we recreate on.
If you are interested in doing more cleanups around Pinal County and the State of Arizona, be sure to check out the calendar on their website: Calendar of Events at www.naturalrestorations.org