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ESR scientist Murray Close has been recognised for his outstanding contribution to groundwater science in New Zealand with a New Zealand Hydrological Society Award.

The nationally recognised groundwater expert has been lauded for his high quality science and scientific leadership.

The award, which was presented at the Hydrological Society conference last week, notes the esteem in which he is held by his peers and colleagues and the significant contributions he has made to issues of national importance over a nearly 40-year career in groundwater science.

Murray joined DSIR in 1979 and moved to ESR when it was established in 1993.

His citation includes the important work establishing the national survey of pesticides in groundwater, work on developing ESR’s groundwater testing site at Burnham and long term research into the effects of irrigation on groundwater quality.

In the 1990s, Murray started to characterise groundwater in the Canterbury Plains, work which continues using new tools and methods to understand groundwater, including research on the transport of nitrate. 

He is also recognised for a collaborative approach to working with regional councils to help understand and manage groundwater resources, with a focus on coming up with practical solutions for groundwater problems.

New Zealand Hydrological Society President Joseph Thomas says the award is a deserved honour.

“Murray has been a passionate and dedicated scientist in the area of groundwater quality for many years. He well deserves the recognition this award brings.”

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Murray Close award

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Jerome Cvitanovich