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Insights How do you become an environmental consultant?

In a nutshell, environmental consultants are responsible for advising on waste management, the effects of climate change and sustainability. These professionals provide deep analysis and insight into all environmental matters and help make informed decisions about projects that will impact the environment. Becoming an environmental consultant means you’ll be evaluating environmental policy, and processes and implementing systems to assess and mitigate any environmental damage. EY reported that 69% of Canadian consumers expect businesses to solve sustainability, making the environmental consultant role a key position.

To make yourself known as a successful environmental consultant, you need to be a strategic thinker and have a strong understanding of the environment as a whole. At AtkinsRéalis , along with our brands Atkins and Faithful+Gould, we understand the importance of advancing in your chosen career path, all the while having a work-life balance. Environmental consultant careers allow you to learn about sustainability and become an expert on environmental-related issues. Our teams in Canada are dedicated to making a difference in local and global communities, and AtkinsRéalis always provides the best support and training to help our people grow.

So, what are the steps to becoming an environmental consultant?

Earn a qualification

The first step to becoming an environmental consultant is earning an industry-recognised qualification. This means achieving a degree in either Environmental Engineering, Environmental Studies, or Environmental Science. As the role of an environmental consultant requires significant foundational knowledge, it’s essential that professionals earn a qualification to showcase they’re ready for the demands of the role.

When you’ve studied environmental science at a high level, you’ll be able to establish yourself as an expert and transfer knowledge to your team. Having a qualification is also essential for career growth as an environmental consultant. According to research, the environmental consultant market has grown in recent years, which means it’s all the more important that you have the right skills to stand out from the competition.

Gain the required experience

One of the most common routes would be an assistant environmental consultant role. Although, that’s not to say there aren’t other options. Other options would be to find positions that are related to environmental consulting, such as a role in urban planning or town planning, which can give you some great experience and networking opportunities. Having relevant professional experience and qualifications gives you the skills and insights.

Additionally, undertaking work experience or volunteering opportunities within environmental consulting are also excellent ways to gain knowledge and develop a stronger understanding of the role. Above all, becoming an environmental consultant requires geographical knowledge, analytical skills and the ability to identify opportunities to improve and safeguard the environment. 

Develop your organisational and research skills

If you’ve got your sights set on a senior environmental consultant position, you’ll need to be highly organised, an expert researcher and comfortable dealing with complex problems. The best environmental consultants have extensive knowledge of environmental policies and regulations, and they have expertise in advising clients on a wide range of projects, such as land developments and waste management policies.

These skills can be developed under your own initiative or through different positions related to the role of an environmental consultant. If you’re passionate, you’ll commit time to professional development and strive to learn as much as you can about the role. This includes keeping up to date with environmental planning trends.

Why you should become an environmental consultant

There are many ways to build a rewarding career that inspires growth and development. As an environmental consultant, you’ll have the opportunity to build relationships with various people, and present information to clients. It’s also the chance to work on meaningful projects that make a difference in the environment. Being an environmental consultant means you’ll be able to explore sites, and commercial projects and write scientific reports. Overall, it’s a varied role where you'll get to solve problems that are adversely affecting the planet.

Grow your environmental consultant career with AtkinsRéalis

A career as an environmental consultant means you’ll be working in a dynamic and growth-oriented team. If you’re looking for the next step in your career, AtkinsRéalis has a range of opportunities in Canada.

We’re committed to paving the way for a better future for our planet and its people. We combine technology and data to deliver high-profile projects for our clients. AtkinsRéalis works on some of the most pressing projects globally and we’re dedicated to overcoming any challenge to help uplift our communities.

Browse our environmental management vacancies or sign up for job alerts to be notified about the latest roles that are suited to you.