MOOP MAP 2018: Day 4 – What MOOP Really Looks Like

Resto All-Star Team member Woody proudly dumps out his MOOP bucket, dusts it off, and sorts it by kind.

MOOP MAP 2018 Day 4: Thursday, September 20, 2018

Total Crew on Playa: 160

City Grid Blocks Completed: 10:00 to 4:30 DE, EF, FG, GH

Location: Black Rock City, NV

Weather: Sunny, clear

Temperature: 70°/32°

Wind: 0-13 mph

This is Playa Restoration’s MOOP Dumpster, a 15 yd dumpster, where only MOOP picked up off of the playa during Resto is allowed.

Look closer. What do you see?

So, this is what all the dusty Matter Out of Place (MOOP) looks like when it’s consolidated into one place. It’s as if you took 1% of anything and everything that everybody brought to Burning Man and then put it in a blender and scattered it randomly about the 156 million square feet of Black Rock City. It’s less specific and concentrated than one would think. Mostly assorted broken bits: overwhelmingly wood debris, followed by plastic debris, metal debris, textiles, cardboard/paper, and electronics debris to name a few.

By far, the most concentrated traces of MOOP are found where we live in the City Grid, from 2:00 to 10:00 Esplanade to L street.

Now, the Bureau of Land Management Site Inspection Standard for Allowable MOOP is not to exceed 1 square foot per acre.

1 acre = 43, 560 square feet.

Therefore, it can be said that the BLM Site Inspection Standard for Allowable MOOP is not to exceed 1 square foot per every 43, 560 square feet of Black Rock City. Black Rock City is a total of 3,603 acres or 156 million square feet. Think about that.

Converted into percentages, the BLM Site Inspection Standard for Allowable MOOP is not to exceed .002%. 

Now, think about that. To say that the BLM Site Inspection is a tight standard is an understatement. Burning Man has been proudly meeting the BLM’s standard for years!

002% is the standard that the Bureau of Land Management has defined for Burning Man, the largest practicing Leave No Trace event on Public Land, a strict standard by which no other event on Public Land is held to. Thanks to you, the Black Rock City community’s Leave No Trace efforts, and the follow-up effort of the Playa Restoration All-Star Team, Burning Man passes it every year.

Think about that Black Rock City.

Here’s Day 4’s MOOP Map.


As always, the MOOP Map is a work in progress and a final hi-res version will be made available only after we’ve completed our work on the playa, reviewed all of our data, and verified that all of the Theme Camps are in their final correct placement.

If you are the official leader/contact of a theme camp and would like to request a MOOP Report you can do so by filling out a MOOP Report Request Form. Due to high demand from Green camps with a little bit of Red, priority will be given to Red camps.



About the author: DA


DA, wings on fire, crash-landed smack dab in the middle of Burning Man 97, ticket in hand, and never left. Three burns later, DA was adopted by the Department of Public Works' Clean-Up Crew and was awestruck at the transformative power of Leaving No Trace. DA grew to be leader, transforming the Clean-Up Crew into the Playa Restoration All-Star Team, and creating the first Moop Map in 2006 as a way to visualize the community's Leave No Trace effort. As a poster artist, DA has illustrated the launch of the Burning Man Theme for 2006 Hope and Fear: The Future, 2007 Green Man, 2008 American Dream, 2013 Cargo Cult, and 2015 Carnival of Mirrors. DA loves the Black Rock Desert and believes that if we, the community, continue to Leave No Trace, then together we can keep building and burning the world over.

25 Comments on “MOOP MAP 2018: Day 4 – What MOOP Really Looks Like

  • G says:

    Off the top of my head, I’d guess there were plug-n-plays are on the outer rings around 9, you know, where the vast swaths of yellow are?

    Report comment

  • Rizzo says:

    There’s a perfect way to make the map 100% green – move the party to private land. Stop destroying the playa and occupying it during the best months of the year.

    Report comment

  • Greenleaf says:

    “Now, the Bureau of Land Management Site Inspection Standard for Allowable MOOP is not to exceed 1 square foot per acre.”

    What does this mean in terms of depth? We know the rule is 1 foot by 1 foot but the height or depth is never discussed. Is it one cubic foot or is it all items laid out in a 1 foot square and the height does not come into play?

    Report comment

    • -g- says:

      1 square foot… meaning that all pieces of trash found in the defined area, placed side by side in a single layer, may not cover area outside of 1 full square foot to meet the minimum standard.

      Report comment

      • Roberto says:

        So, If I understand you correctly, a 4″x4″x4″ cube of wood is counted the same as a 4″x4″x0.001″ square of tissue paper? Volume and mass are irrelevant; possible surface area as found is all that matters, correct? An escaped box or roll of tissue has comparatively little mass or volume, but by the time the wind is done playing with it, its potential “acreage” climbs a bit. Keep it up! Trash is cumulative. Nobody wants to play on the playa in the last-year’s crap of 75,000 people, though we do it in our cities all the time. (Yech!) There are a great many worse things you could be obsessing about!

        Report comment

  • Buttercup says:

    So if you and your camp moop for hours and hours and take video and pictures before you leave and still end up with a red dot in the middle of Green, then what!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

    Report comment

  • Shrugs says:

    It looks like we’re all green again this year. I’m the Moop Czar for Anonymous Village. We have a whole block and I take my job VERY seriously. I’m usually the last person to leave and I spend my last day walking every foot of our village, dragging a rake behind me so I know where I’ve looked. Small price to pay to insure we leave no trace.

    Report comment

  • Grapefruit says:

    The big swipes of yellow… hmmm I do recall seeing some unfortunate plug and plays over there.. bummer.

    Report comment

  • CeLe says:

    I was on Earth Guardian’s LNT patrols. Most folks want to do it right, even if they forget or don’t notice. If your camp doesn’t have a designated LNT person, that’s a good way to have someone actively paying attention. If we moved to private land, what would motive the slobs? Having BLM on our backs may be a good thing!

    Report comment

  • Gary says:

    When does final moop map get released ? Our camp hasnt been listed yet

    Report comment

  • luvnut says:

    Big hugs and love to the Resto All-Stars!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!!

    Report comment

  • Skylark says:

    I have a “dumb” question – I always thought we were supposed to pull up the placement flagging (lil plastic flags on wire sticks) as part of our camp’s mooping op’s. But does the resto team need the marker flags somehow to measure the moop grid?

    Huge props to the resto team!!!

    Report comment

  • Marklar says:

    The marker flags are only suggestions, and meant to be pulled up when you first arrive. Preferably, before your neighbors arrive. It’s the way you can help support the hardworking placement team, who are often so stretched that they consider it a playa gift that you just fix their miscalculation yourself, rather than complaining to them. It’s a damn do-ocracy, people.

    Report comment

    • HepKitten says:

      Uhhh, no….

      Absolutely please disregard the comment left above.

      The placement team and the restoration team would both appreciate it if you left all blue flags as they were when you arrive.

      Report comment

  • Hank says:

    I do remember reading that Resto likes us to leave the blue marker flags in so that they can see where camp boundaries are.

    Report comment

  • Hi there, after reading this awesome post i am as well cheerful to share my experience
    here with colleagues.

    Report comment

  • Comments are closed.