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Environmental consultant

What do you do?

An environment consultant works with organisations on a range of environmental issues, offering expert advisory and assessment services to ensure that possible damaging environmental effects are minimised or eliminated. This could concern air, water or land contamination, waste management and recycling practices or renewable energy opportunities.

What’s a typical day like?

Typical activities could include looking at the suitability of new developments, such as housing, power stations, wind farms or other large development sites that may impact the environment, conducting field surveys and collecting data about levels of pollution or contamination on a site and interpreting data, which can include using software-modelling packages, and report writing amongst other tasks including administration and field work.

This career would suit people with:

  • some commercial awareness, as consultants operate in a very commercial environment

  • good communication and presentation skills

  • IT skills, such as word processing and the use of spreadsheets and presentation packages

  • project management skills, as time and resources are allocated to projects and need to be monitored and adhered to

  • organisation and time management skills, to manage several projects at one time


What makes it a green career?

Environmental consultants work specifically to try to minimise harmful environmental impacts as a result of development work. They can also be involved with trying to remedy existing business practices to make them more environmentally friendly and therefore sustainable.

What qualifications do you need?

An undergraduate degree in geography, land studies, environmental sciences, engineering or similar would be helpful

How much could you earn?

Graduate starting salaries typically range from £22,000 to £24,500 per year. For those with two to five years of experience, range from £22,000 to £33,000 per year. Salaries for senior consultants, with five to ten years experience, range from £33,000 to £44,000 per year. For those with ten or more years experience, salaries are in the region of £38,500 to £60,000 per year.

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