Environmental consulting can be found in many aspects of construction, manufacturing and government industries. Different types of environmental consulting jobs include environmental project manager, environmental geologist, environmental engineer or environmental scientist. Other titles include registered environmental assessor, asbestos inspector, property condition assessor, subsurface tank assessor, and environmental investigator.
An environmental consultant may find employment with an environmental consulting firm, or work as an independent contractor. Different types of environmental consulting jobs tackle different environmental issues. The consultant can focus on determining environmental impact through testing, developing engineering methods for handling environmental pollution, analyzing and reporting on data for environmental planning, or helping companies navigate environmental regulations.
An environmental consulting company can employ many types of environmental consulting associates, each specializing in a different area. Independent consultants often have a moderate level of expertise in many different areas. Careers in environmental engineering consulting can involve finding new and better ways to reduce and monitor environmental impact. These engineers may also devise ways of cleaning up or preventing pollution on construction projects or at manufacturing sites.
Environmental consulting associates often perform environmental testing and analysis. They may assess contamination in air, land, water or within workplaces. This may be done through records investigations, or it may require field surveys to check for radon, mold, asbestos and other harmful pollutants. Field surveys are sometimes used to determine baseline pollution levels before a construction project begins. Consultants will then monitor the situation to ensure no further environmental damage occurs. Environmental testing is also used in real estate transactions when the seller must prove land is not contaminated before it can be sold.
Consultant firms may employ environmental consulting engineers who either devise ways of preventing potential sources of pollution or develop methods to clean existing pollution. They may use computer models to analyze data and build predictive models for future environmental planning. Some environmental consulting jobs involve public relations work, managing a company’s reputation and risk factors with respect to environmental and pollution issues. Environmental consulting jobs may also be found for those who specialize in environmental laws and regulations. These consultants will work closely with public relations departments to manage the company’s response to environmental problems.
Regardless of the type of environmental consulting jobs, all environmental consultants must be able to write reports, outlining findings and recommendations. These reports must contain detailed technical information, presented in a format that a layperson can easily understand. They must also be able to explain reports verbally with excellent communication and interpersonal skills.