Volvo Enviroment Prize to water researches

The Volvo Environment Prize is awarded this year to Professors David Schindler and Malin Falkenmark. They receive the prize for their pioneering achievements in research in the fields of water quality and water supply, respectively. A rapidly increasing population and a growing global economy are a great strain on the planet's water supply. Today approximately 80 percent of the countries of the world have a shortage of clean fresh water. Even in countries with a good supply of water, its quality is threatened by various pollutants. Therefore securing a supply of water in the world is a matter of much importance and an absolute prerequisite for long-term sustainable development. Through their work Schindler and Falkenmark have contributed to increasing the global understanding of the importance of water-related issues, and with new facts they have influenced both politicians and industry to take measures against the problems. Pioneering work in overfertilization and acidification David Schindler is professor at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. During his career he has been responsible for a number of research projects aimed primarily at describing the effects of various pollutants on fresh water. Acidification, overfertilization, chemical pollutants and climate change are some of the areas where Schindler's research has generated new facts. During the 1970s Schindler established among other things the decisive role played by phosphorus in the overfertilization of water: work which resulted in a limitation on the levels of phosphorus in detergents in Canada and the United States. In the 1980s Schindler showed, quite contrary to the current opinion, that acidified lakes can recover by biological means. One of Schindler's current projects shows the devastating effect that a combination of acidification, UV radiation and climate change can have on organisms living in water. Bridge builder with a focus on global water supply Malin Falkenmark is professor at the Swedish Natural Science Research Council in Stockholm, Sweden. Her research achievements have contributed in a decisive way to increasing the efficiency of the water supply in industrialized as well as developing countries. By clarifying how water supply is related to various environmental, social and economic factors, Falkenmark has contributed to providing an overall view of, and to increasing our understanding of water- related problems. She has also been very successful in the role of "bridge builder" between researchers in various fields. Falkenmark is the first researcher to demonstrate the risks of using research results from temperate zones as points of departure for analyses of other climatic zones. The Volvo Environment Prize for 1998 will be presented at a ceremony in th Brussels on 27 of October. The total amount of the prize is SEK 1 500 000. The Volvo Environment Prize was founded in 1988 and is awarded this year for the ninth time. July 7, 1998 For more information on the prizewinners and on The Volvo Environment Prize, please contact: AB Volvo, Environmental and Public Affairs, Anders Johannesson, Tel +46 31 59 11 88

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