SETAC Globe - Environmental Quality Through Science
  8 December 2011
Volume 12 Issue 12

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In Memoriam for Dr. Thomas Knacker

Dr. Thomas Knacker
Dr. Thomas Knacker

On October 30, 2011 we lost Dr. Thomas Knacker, a much valued colleague, research partner and friend. We miss his congenial and gentle nature, his quiet sense of humour and the diplomatic way in which he worked with people. We highly regret the loss of an internationally honoured ecotoxicologist. The colleagues and friends that wish to express their sorrow in this letter of remembrance include individuals from a variety of organizations and academic institutions in Europe and abroad.

SETAC-Europe, the Federal Environment Agency and the Federal Institute of Hydrology also want to recognize as institutions the lifelong commitment of Thomas to ecotoxicology and to express regret at his passing too soon in life. The Board of the environmental chemistry and toxicology subgroup within the GDCh (Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker) is deeply saddened about Thomas’ sudden and unexpected death. He served for two years as our colleague on the board, and enriched our work through his outstanding expertise in environmental risk assessment of chemicals. His thoughtful, friendly and reliable work in the Executive Board will be sorely missed.

The interdisciplinary DWA-GDCh group “anthropogenic micropollutants in the urban water cycle” will always remember the contribution that Thomas made to open our eyes to ecotoxicological views. His profound expertise made the work group much more worthy. Thomas was a member for more than 10 years in our group and we are very thankful and proud to have worked with him. We will miss him very much as a good friend and an excellent scientist.

Thomas was one of the founding members of the highly successful ecotoxicology consulting and contract research company for almost 20 years, ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH, based in Flörsheim, Germany. Through his leadership with the company, he took an active role in ecotoxicology research in Europe, including his role as the Principal Investigator with “ERAPharm”, a large EU 6th Framework Project that involved researchers from 8 different countries.

We all got to know Thomas as a generous and likeable person. By enthusiastic and inspirational discussions, he encouraged all of us to see new possibilities in ecotoxicological research. He was always very open-minded and ready to share knowledge, and especially enjoyed taking mentorship roles with young scientists. On many occasions he gave talks to students and impressed the audience as a role model for young scientists interested in applied ecotoxicology.

We will always remember Thomas as a skilled scientist with a high international reputation, as a valued colleague, a good friend and as a sincerely engaged mentor. We feel the loss when regarding the empty place that he has left behind among the ranks of ecotoxicologists and among his friends. Our condolences and thoughts go out to his wife, Margitta, his daughter Katharina and to his family.

With much sadness:
Alfredo Alder, EAWAG, Dübendorf, Switzerland
Karl-Heinz Bauer and Lilo Weber, Hessenwasser Groß-Gerau, Germany
Werner Brack, UFZ Leipzig, Germany
Alistair Boxall, University of York, U.K.
Thomas Braunbeck, University of Heidelberg, Germany
Eric Bruns, Bayer CropScience Aktiengesellschaft, Leverkusen-Monheim, Germany
Hermann Dieter, Umweltbundesamt Berlin, Germany
Uwe Dünnbier, Berliner Wasserbetriebe, Germany
Anja Coors, ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH, Flörsheim a.M., Germany
Klaus Peter Ebke, Mesocosm GmbH, Homberg (Ohm), Germany
Adolf Eisenträger, Tobias Frische, Tamara Grummt and Hermann H. Dieter on behalf of the Federal Environment Agency, Dessau, Germany
Kathrin Fenner, EAWAG Dübendorf, Germany
Sven Geißen, Technische Universität Berlin, Germany
Tamara Grummt, Umweltbundesamt Bad Elster, Germany
Peter Heininger, Martin Keller and Georg Reifferscheid, on behalf of the Federal Institute of Hydrology Bundesanstalt für Gewässerkunde, Germany
Henner Hollert, Institute for Environmental Research, RWTH Aachen, Germany
Udo Hommen, Fraunhofer IME, Schmallenberg, Germany
Ulrike Kammann, Institut für Fischereiökologie, Hamburg, Germany
Christine Kula, Bundesamt für Verbraucherschutz und Lebensmittelsicherheit (BVL), Braunschweig, Germany
Christa McArdell, EAWAG, Dübendorf, Switzerland
Harald Mückter, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, München, Germany
Jörg Oehlmann and Ulrike Schulte-Oehlmann, University of Frankfurt, Germany
Chris Metcalfe, Trent University, Canada
Jörg Römbke, ECT Oekotoxikologie GmbH, Flörsheim a.M., Germany
Christoph Schäfers, Fraunhofer IME, Schmallenberg, Germany
Andreas Schäffer, RWTH Aachen University and GDCh, Germany
Julia Schwaiger, Bavarian LFU, Germany
Thomas Schwartz, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany
Helmut Segner, University of Berne, Switzerland
Mark Servos, University of Waterloo, Canada
Peter Seel, HLUG Wiesbaden, Germany
Hansruedi Siegrist and Adriano Joss, EAWAG Duebendorf, Switzerland
Bernhard Teiser, Abwasserverband Braunschweig, Germany
Thomas Ternes, Bundesanstalt für Gewässerkunde Koblenz, Germany on behalf of the DWA-GDCh group “anthropogenic micropollutants in the urban water cycle”
Rita Triebskorn and Heinz Köhler, University of Tübingen, Germany
Inge Werner, Oekotoxzentrum, EAWAG/EPFL, Dübendorf, Switzerland

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