Posts Tagged ‘water’

Professor David Schindler, 1998

October 27, 2009

David Schindler work has been widely used in formulating ecologically sound management policy in Canada, the USA and in Europe.

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From 1968 to 1989, he founded and directed the Experimental Lakes Project of the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans near Kenora, Ontario where he has conducted whole-lake experiments to study the effects of eutrophication, acid rain, climate change, ultraviolet radiation, and nonnative species on lake ecosystems.
As a limnologist and ecologist, his aim was not to study individual parameters in isolation, but all of them simultaneously, in order to construct an image of the entire lake as an integrated ecosystem. Schindler’s results became influential in convincing regulators in the United States and Canada to set up stricter controls on phosphates and acidifying pollutants such as sulphur dioxide. Many of the results of the project have proved to be highly relevant in the context of sustainable development worldwide. Schindler’s work has influenced ecology management policy in the United States, Canada, and Europe.
Most known for:
One of the most convincing results came from an experiment in 1973 in which Schindler parted a lake with a giant shower curtain and treated one half with carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorous and the other half with carbon and nitrogen only. The dramatic results were photographed form above: the phosphorous-treated half of the lake had become green and murky because of algal blooms, whereas the other half of the lake remained clear. The picture-evidence showing the blatant contrast of the two lake halves became widely spread both amongst the public and policy makers.
Other dramatic results that caught the public eye was from a set of experiment staring in the late 1970s. Schindler wanted to show the fragileness of food chains and the inpact of acid rain. He showed that the elimination of only one or two species could disrupt entire ecosystems. Pictures of starving fish helped raise public concern and the legislations for stricter air quality followed.
Now:
His current research interests include the study of fisheries management in mountain lakes, the biomagnification of organochlorines in food chains, effects of climate change and UV radiation on lakes, and global carbon and nitrogen budgets.
Dr. Schindler teaches limnology, the philosophy, sociology and politics of science/science and public policy in Canada, and environmental decision making.
Quotations:
“Recent studies show that lakes release very high releases of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, in many cases higher than the surrounding forests in the same watersheds. This has been missed in climate modeling to date.”
Read more in “Vital climate change warnings are being ignored, says expert” in e!Scince News

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Professor Malin Falkenmark, 1998

October 27, 2009

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Malin Falkenmark is the Senior Scientist at the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) and Chair of the Scientific Program Committee for the Stockholm Water Symposium.

A great deal of Prof. Falkenmark’s work deals with the problem of water shortage in developing countries. She has shown that population growth drives countries with low per capita water availability towards a water barrier, which will make it progressively more difficult to satisfy further water demands.

Most known for:
She introduced the “water crowding” indicator, the concepts “hydrosolidarity” and “green and blue water”.

Now:
She is now Senior Scientific Advisor at Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), and joined the Stockholm Resilience Center in March 2007 where she in line with her broad inter disciplinary interest is looking into the areas of Food, Water and Ecosystems.

Stockholm Resilience Centre http://www.stockholmresilience.org
SIWI: http://www.siwi.org/

WATER CYCLE AND PEOPLE – water for feeding humanity by Professor Malin Falkenmark, Stockholm International Water Institute http://www.mwp.org/proceedings/dokument/Id_20.pdf

Prof. Falkenmark is Professor Emerita of Applied and International Hydrology at the former Swedish Natural Sciences Research Council and tied to the Department of Systems Ecology at the Stockholm University. For many years Prof. Falkenmark worked as a hydrologist at the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute in Stockholm.

Since 1965 she has served as Scientific Secretary and Executive Member of the Committee for Hydrology at the Natural Sciences Research Council, Stockholm, where in 1986 she received a personal chair as Professor of Applied and International Hydrology.

During her career, Prof. Falkenmark has served as an expert in several international and Swedish Governmental Committees. Since 1993 she has been a member of the UN Committee on Natural Resources and was in 1999 elected to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources for Development by the United Nations’ Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

Professor Malin Falkenmark and Professor David Schindler

October 27, 2009

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The Prize Jury’s Citation:
The Volvo Environment Prize for 1998 is awarded jointly to Professor Malin Falkenmark and Professor David Schindler for the outstanding work concerning the world’s freshwater which each of them has carried out independently. Professor Falkenmark has made a penetrating analysis of how complex systems of hydrological and ecological factors interact to control the freshwater available world-wide. Professor Schindler has contributed very insights in the proccesses of eutrification and acidification of freshwater and of ways to counteract these procecesses.

In spite of our critical dependence on water, we have used our rivers, lakes, and the sea as recipients for waste and sewage. This has resulted in severe pollution, which has been especially rapid during the last 100 years, when the cities have grown and we have introduced effective sewage systems in which we have poured diverse garbage and detergents. Also, fertilizers from farming have ended up in lakes and in the sea. The result has been eutrophication, i.e., nutrient overloading, of lakes and coastal waters.

The laureates have devoted their professional lives to working on issues linked to the important renewable resource, water. The significance of their work becomes greater every year, as the world water supply comes under ever increasing stress. The laureates have long recognized these threats, calling for environmentally sound action on water management.

Professor Gilberg White, 1995

September 26, 2009

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Natural resource planning

The Prize Jury’s Citation:
From his pioneering work during the 1930’s on natural resource planning, with special attention to flood plain management, to his superlative leadership in directing wideranging programs in natural hazards at the University of Chicago in the 1960’s, right through to his important work at the University of Colorado on radioactive-waste management in the 1990’s, his careers has been studded with accomplishments of extraordinary significance.

Most known for:
Gilbert White was a prominent American geographer, sometimes termed the “father of floodplain management” and the “leading environmental geographer of the 20th century”. White is known predominantly for his work on natural hazards, particularly flooding,  and the importance of sound water management in contemporary society.

Quotations:
“The contributions which geographic thought can make to the advancement of society are relatively few, simple, and powerful. They are so few and simple that a significant proportion of them can be taught to high school and beginning undergraduate students. They are so powerful that failure to recognize them jeopardizes the ability of citizens to deal intelligently with a rapidly changing and increasingly complex world.” 1962. “Critical Issues Concerning Geography in the Public Service-Introduction.” Annals, Association of American Geographers 52 (3):279-280.

CV:
White was the Gustavson Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Geography at the University of Colorado from 1980 until his death in 2006. Prior to that, from 1970 to 1978, he was Professor of Geography and the Director of the Institute of Behavioral Science at the university. He was also the founder and Director of the university’s Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center (now called simply the “Natural Hazards Center”) from 1976 to 1984 and again from 1992 to 1994.

Now:
In 2001 Gilbert donated his research library and personal papers to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The collection, considered one of the largest in the world on water resources planning, is now housed in the Arthur Maass – Gilbert F. White Reference Room at the Corps’ Institute for Water Resources in Alexandria, Virginia.