What is an Environment Professional
An environmental practitioner typically works across the organisation at all levels of operations and management to deliver environmental improvements and cost savings.
There are many job titles and roles, but a skilled and qualified environment professional;
- identifies and measure areas where a company can reduce its environmental impact
- delivers environmental improvements
- ensures that the organisation is complying with environmental regulations
- reports on its performance and making recommendations
As environment professionals move towards the top of the profession (some of whom will be Chartered Environmentalists) they increasingly take responsibility for developing and implementing their organisation’s business strategy with environment at the heart of decision-making. In leadership roles they innovate, envision and transform the whole organisation towards a sustainable future. See IEMA's Skills Map for more information on these levels of experience and knowledge.
At the operational level environment professionals make a difference by using their knowledge and skills to ensure that their company continues to comply with environmental regulations and develop programmes to deliver environmental performance improvement. There are those who specialise in assessing and managing the environmental impacts of commercial and community development projects.
There is a variety of interesting and rewarding careers that involve the specialist management and protection of the earth’s land, air and water resources which require expertise in areas such as: ecology, energy, sustainability, legal compliance, waste, resource management, life cycle assessment, biodiversity, impact assessment, auditing and risk management.
The skills and training required to become an environmental practitioner vary according to specialism. Graduates and career changers should expect to develop their knowledge and skills through a combination of qualifications, training, continuous professional development and involvement through networking, conferences, workshops and reading throughout their whole career. IEMA leads the way in providing the support and access to this for our 15,000 members, who are environmental practitioners, and is dedicated to a sustainable future through environmental skills, knowledge and thought leadership.
Environment roles are rapidly emerging and evolving as the environment becomes part of the fabric of strategic decision making in organisations. This offers a wealth of opportunities for those with a passion about creating a sustainable future.