Who is this qualification designed for?
Environmental officers, environmental protection officers, environmental compliance officers, technical officers and similar job roles.
These personnel are employed by enterprises, governments and resource management authorities. There are some differences in the work of public and private sector employees. For example, Environmental Officers employed by governments may be involved with external auditing of enterprises, negotiating appropriate responses to instances of non-compliance and issuing enforcement notices. Employees of enterprises are more likely to be involved with environmental monitoring and technology, internal auditing and continuous improvements to enhance compliance and minimise the environmental impacts of processes.
What fields do they work in?
These personnel work in a very wide range of fields such as:
- Environmental monitoring of air, clean water (catchments, water supply, surface and groundwater, environmental flows), contaminated land and groundwater, soil, noise)
- Environmental compliance inspection
- Clean-up of spills, hazardous materials, site remediation
- Energy technologies and services
- Geotechnical services, civil engineering
- Water treatment, storm and wastewater management
- Health and safety (e.g. noise, air quality)
- Natural resources management
- Pollution control and prevention
- Solid and hazardous waste management.
What is their job role?
These personnel have limited responsibility for environmental decision making and data interpretation because of the significant consequences that serious findings may have on economic activity.
Rather, they assist specialised environmental scientists, ecologists and engineers to collect, analyse and present reliable environmental information.
Field decisions are taken in consultation with others.
What kinds of work do they do?
Job tasks will vary with the fields of employment. However, most personnel use a variety of sampling methods and environmental instrumentation to measure a wide range of parameters such as air, water, noise, wastes and pollutants. The results are used to characterise sites, assess environmental indicators and gauge the effectiveness of environmental management actions.
Employees working in catchment management or the management of rare or endangered species may have a wider ecological emphasis in their work. In all cases, Environmental Officers need to be able to handle very large data sets. They may also use geographic information systems (GIS) and/or computer modelling.