True Pigments, a social enterprise of Rural Action, needs a little help harvesting iron sludge from Pine Run and the Truetown Discharge site later this month.

Sound like fun?

Actually, it is. The work is messy, but participants in the last harvest had a blast, and the result was a product showing the immense potential of this startup, which essentially turns pollution into paint. True Pigments takes iron oxide from historic coal mining that taints local streams and turns it into valuable pigment that can be used in paint and other products. Sales of the pigment will help fund further watershed cleanups.

“Please bring water, snacks, lunch, and whatever else you may need for a day outside,” says Michelle Shively, True Pigments Director of Project Development. “Definitely wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty because you WILL get dirty.”

The iron sludge will be used to create 150 pounds of pigment to send to Gamblin Artists Colors to create more Reclaimed Earth Colors paint sets.

Volunteers are needed for three dates – Oct. 18, 22, and 25. Bring a few friends and create your own harvest crew! Just use the form below to pick a date and volunteer.