Operation Paydirt is a multidisciplinary, artist-driven project advancing a solution to the devastating problem of lead (Pb) contaminated soil that puts thousands of children at risk for severe learning disabilities and behavioral problems. The goals of the project are to raise awareness of the issues of lead and to create a model for making cities lead-safe across the United States. Ultimately Operation Paydirt’s purpose is to support generational human and environmental health.
Operation Paydirt brings together the science to transform toxic lead so that it is no longer harmful and the critical collaborations to implement the solution.
The project is currently in collaboration with US EPA Region IX in Oakland, CA on the first urban residential use of Paydirt’s Treat Lock Cover “TLC” protocol as an alternative to traditional methods of remediation. TLC offers an economic and simple application of highly refined fishbone-based calcium phosphate to neutralize lead found above tolerable thresholds. In parallel to EPA’s efforts, the key Paydirt scientific advisor is implementing a detailed demonstration of the TLC science in six severely lead contaminated properties in New Orleans, LA.
The Fundreds are designed to raise awareness of this environmental threat and offer the voices of democratic expression for the solution. All across the country people are drawing Fundred Dollar Bills – original, hand drawn interpretations of $100 bills. The Fundred Dollar Bill “artworks” are being collected by armored truck and will be delivered to Washington DC, where the value of the art currency will promote support to implement the solution in New Orleans and cities across the country.
Primary Operatives: Mary Rubin, Amanda Wiles
Scientific Principals: Andrew Hunt, Ph.D. Howard Mielke, Ph.D.
Paydirt Pilot Site Implementation: US EPA Region IX Emergency Response for West Oakland, CA South Prescott Community, CURTAILS: New Orleans