Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Honoured scientist toasts recycled water

A short and sweet article from The Age (Melbourne) today...

Honoured scientist toasts recycled water
The Age
Chee Chee Leung
April 18, 2007

THE former head of a committee set up by the Bracks Government to help plan Melbourne's water strategy has supported using recycled water for drinking.

Emeritus Professor Nancy Millis, a Victorian microbiologist who last night received a lifetime achievement award, said drinking recycled water could boost dwindling resources.

"This is something which people are a little bit concerned about, but I believe the technology is now very well established," said Professor Millis, who chaired Melbourne's water resources strategy committee from 2000 to 2002.

Her comments come just months after Premier Steve Bracks said recycled water would not be required under the state's 50-year plan.

Professor Millis said if low rainfall continued, policymakers should look at different ways of providing water.

Photo: Pat Scala (The Age)

The scientist, who chaired a committee overseeing gene technology for the Australian Government, also said rules covering genetic engineering should be relaxed if research revealed that risks were less severe than first thought. "You move in response to knowledge, you don't move in response to prejudice."

Professor Millis spoke to The Age yesterday before she was honoured for her lifetime achievement in science by the ATSE Clunies Ross Awards, held in Melbourne. The awards recognise people who have applied science and technology for the benefit of Australia.

Other winners this year include Professor Ian Frazer, who developed the cervical cancer vaccine, and ResMed chairman Dr Peter Farrell, for making devices to treat obstructive sleep apnoea.


Paul said...

Great photo - gives me great confidence to drink recycled water!

Stuart Khan said...

Thanks for your comment Paul,

I guess its true that Prof. Mills does not fit the media stereotype of a scientist. You may or may not be surprised to learn that many great scientists have been (or are) female and many of them have grown (or are) elderly. Sometimes they even take off the white labcoat and safety glasses.

Anonymous said...

the issue is recycled water not how nancy milles looks in the photo!
get over your looks thing!
its appearence verses reality!!

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