Ernst Kuntze


Ernst Kuntze

Distinguished Pioneer

Professional background

Ernst Kuntze (1920-2014) was Head of the Wastewater Division in the City of Hamburg. He studied Civil Engineering in Hannover and began his professional career 1950 at Ruhrverband. Since 1963 he was responsible for the planning and construction of the sewerage system in the City of Hamburg, one year later for the whole wastewater management in Hamburg. He received an honorary doctorate from Aachen Technical University in 1973. Ernst Kuntze was president of the German Association for Wastewater (ATV) between 1969 and 1985 and one of the driving figures in establishing a strong training and educational system for personnel in the wastewater sector. One of the awards of today’s German Association for Water, Wastewater and Waste (DWA) is named after Ernst Kuntze.

Major Contributions to IWA

Ernst Kuntze was not only intensively engaged in German associations, but also on an international level. From 1972 to 1978 he acted as vice president of the International Association on Water Pollution Research (IAWPR) and was an active member in several specialist groups. Between 1981 and 1984 Ernst Kuntze was the founding president of the European Water Pollution Control Association (EWPCA) with a major focus on the European water sector but was at that time seen also as a competitor to IAWPR. Beside other awards, he received honorary memberships from the Water Pollution Control Federation (WPCF) in 1978 and the Swiss Association on Water and Wastewater (VSA) in 1979. Ernst Kuntze was also very instrumental in developing IFAT which is today the world leading trade fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management.

Author: Norbert Jardin, Germany