About Our Name

Blacksmith Institute envisions a Pure Earth. 

As of March 10, 2015, Blacksmith Institute will officially be known by the name – Pure Earth. When the organization was founded in 1999, the goal was to go tackle toxic pollution problems in low- and middle-income countries.  In order to do that we would handle problems no one else wanted to touch. As founder Richard Fuller states, in his upcoming book The Brown Agenda, ‘We would employ scientists, public health experts, and environmental engineers who would put boots on the ground and dirty their hands in some of the worst polluted places on the planet’.

Similarly, the blacksmith has a very dirty job. The blacksmith puts his whole being, muscle and mind, taking raw materials and making it into a useful product. Therefore the name Blacksmith Institute came to fruition.

Nearly ten years later the staff and board of directors felt the name needed too much explanation. Blacksmith Institute didn’t immediately conjure up the image of a clean safe world. Rich says ‘So we went back to the drawing board, and came up with our new name – Pure Earth. We had some workshops and many discussions in the end, it was Dev Patel, the brilliant actor who played the hero of Slumdog Millionaire, who pushed us to choose Pure Earth. This name tells the mission and goal of the organization in two words – Pure Earth. Going forward we will be known by our new name’.

All of the information and resources found on the Blacksmith Institute website can now be found on the Pure Earth website.This Blacksmith Institute site will remain live until all our global offices have had a chance to transition to the new name, but this site will no longer be updated. Project partners and governmental organizations, as well as our donors who know us as by our old name are being notified of the name change to Pure Earth.

Our mission and work are still the same. We go in to communities and assess toxic pollution in the environment. If results come back showing high levels toxins in the air, soil, water are adversely affecting the health of the residents, we develop a program to clean up the community. Cleaning up one community at a time brings us closer to a Pure Earth.

Press release: Blacksmith announces name change