A common side effect of the mining industry, iron oxide runoff, has been impacting the US state of Ohio's waterways for generations. Now, a group of artists and scientists in the state are removing this contaminant from a section of Sunday creek and using it as an ingredient in paint pigment. "In Southeast Ohio, acid mine drainage is a common pollutant in our streams. You can still run into children who, you tell them to draw a stream, and they reach for an orange crayon," said Guy Riefler, professor of Civil Engineering at Ohio University. Working in tandem with Riefler, artist and environmentalist John Sabraw and a group of volunteers have developed a process that converts iron oxide waste into pigment for oil paints. "With little funding and lots of skeptics, we've been refining a process that can continuously treat acid mine drainage, restore a stream for aquatic life, and collect sustainably sourced iron pigment that can be sold offsetting operational costs. Based on our estimates, we should be able to create jobs and produce a small profit, while eliminating a perpetual pollution source," Sabraw said.

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