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Wetlands expert to protect rivers.

A WORLD-LEADING expert who disabled land mines in the Falklands has started work at Liverpool University.

Professor Edward Maltby worked in the south Atlantic on disabling plastic land mines embedded in the ground.

His analysis of the wetlands meant he could characterise the minefields and give options for them to be cleared.

His work contributed to the development of a ground-probing radar device for detecting mines.

His work has also led him to Vietnam as well as Iraq In addition to this work, Prof Maltby is a leading expert in the science and management of wetlands and his work in Liverpool will be to direct a major new initiative to protect rivers, estuaries and the marine environment.

Now he has been appointed director of the new Institute for Sustainable Water, Integrated Management and Ecosystem Research (SWIMMER) facility based at Liverpool University.

Prof Maltby said: ``SWIMMER will provide a focus for the considerable scientific and technical expertise, which exists throughout the university, in aspects of water management.

``We want to attract experts from organisations across the UK and beyond to develop innovative solutions to sustainable water management.

``Research and applications promoted through SWIMMER will benefit the region such as the Ribble catchment which has been selected by the Environment Agency as a test bed for the new European Water Framework Directive.

``There is a great need to maintain and improve our environment. Solutions can come only from strong partnerships. Our academics and researchers have a major role to play in this exciting new venture.

``This is a great opportunity for us to help the North West against flooding. This has become more of an issue in the north of late with the terrible flooding that has happened in Carlisle.

``There is a great team here and I'm looking forward to working with the university's partners. ''

Prof Maltby's work has also led him to Iraq, where he is currently advising on water management and the restoration of damaged wetlands in the south and Iran.

Saddam Hussein had diverted the water flow to the south of the region as part of his persecution of the Shi'ites.

In Vietnam, Prof Maltby illustrated how the restoration of the Mekong Delta wetlands could help alleviate poverty in the area.

He showed how restoration of the forested wetlands in Vietnam could yield abundant natural products such as honey and essential oils for cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, as well as provide products for housing.

chris brown@dailypost. co. uk

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Professor Maltby is an expert on rivers and wetlands
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Feb 17, 2005
Words:421
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