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AtkinsRéalis Environment Practice

The team

We are a passionate, fun and friendly, multi-disciplinary team of over 500 environmentalists, sustainability experts, ecologists, scientists, planners, economists, project managers and engineers. We work together to solve complex problems to make a real difference to people, society and the environment and have a positive impact on the world.

Our inclusive culture ensures that everyone's voice is heard and valued, and we pride ourselves on our diversity and collaboration. Different really does makes a difference.

​With such a wide range of disciplines and project opportunities, as part of AtkinsRéalis Environment, you have the chance to follow your interests and drive your own career direction. ​

team sitting around lunch table


It's such an exciting time to lead the Environment Team as we are driving cutting-edge initiatives such as Net Zero, ESG, BNG and social value across our company and our client’s businesses"

Vicky Hutchinson, Practice Director

Our Practices

Through the successful delivery of planning and environmental consents we help our clients make the right decisions in a complex and fast-paced world. Our expertise in policy, regulation and delivery allows us to influence regulators and decision makers, ensuring that we deliver sustainable and positive client outcomes across markets both in the UK and overseas. Our services include planning; development consent orders; economics; environmental impact assessment; stakeholder engagement; environmental management; environmental permitting; heritage; carbon and sustainability; and waste and resource management.

Operating at the interface between people and the water environment, we work with our clients in the UK and around the world in providing innovative design solutions, research and advisory services for a sustainable future. Our key services include water resources and water quality planning; flood risk management and hydraulic flood modelling, hydrogeology and hydrology; integrated catchment management; aquatic ecology, hydromorphology; river restoration; climate futures and resilience; environmental engineering; coastal and marine environmental management; environmental and economic planning & appraisal; regulation and assurance; strategic asset management; data analytics. We are at the forefront of new developments for the Water & Environment sector and have created new tools and approaches that are revolutionising how we plan for resilient and sustainable water management for the future.​

Addressing our industrial legacy, we protect the environment, human health and water resources while enabling benefical (re)use of land to meet society's needs now and in the future. In developing major infrastructure schemes and housing we investigate, assess and remediate land, removing chemical and physical constraints. Using our blend of digital science and engineering expertise, including geological, hydrogeological, waste, chemistry and broad environmental skills, we maintain an award-winning reputation for adaptive, applied and integrated mitigation. We turn constraint into opportunity, influencing design, minimising engineering requirements while embedding innovation and sustainability at the earliest project stages.​

A team of highly trained economists and international experts, we help our clients to make good decisions and create a better future. Our main areas of specialism are sustainable urban development, business case preparation, economic and financial appraisal, investment advisory, economic development and regeneration, socio-economic appraisal, international water, energy policy & planning and utility regulation.​

Our award-winning team across the UK work on some of the most exciting projects, we are at the forefront of innovation and technology in ecology. ​We support each other, and our colleagues around the world to deliver for our clients, sharing our knowledge and discoveries to better the industry and raise standards.​The ecology teamwork across all markets, in all corners of the UK and NI. Our services include survey and mitigation, reporting, Habitat Regulations Assessment, habitat enhancement and creation, not to mention leading the way in biodiversity net gain and natural capital.

Our clients turn to us when innovative solutions are required to help solve complex issues, and when others fail to deliver “right first time”. AAE services are regularly on the critical path for our clients’ programmes, and we pride ourselves on delivering to challenging timescales while maintaining our reputation for rigorous technical and analytical services. We work on single topic jobs or multidisciplinary projects, delivering specialist services at every stage of the design process, from concept to completion. We work on everything from planning applications for small scale developments through to action plans for areas/authorities and on to nationally significant infrastructure projects. Our work encompasses individual one-off’s to multi-year programmes of work across regions in the UK and internationally.​

Discover more


team sitting around lunch table

Assistant scientist

Since I joined AtkinsRéalis in the Water Management Consultancy practice two years ago on the Graduate Development Programme, no two days have been the same!

Most days I catch up with my manager and the rest of my team, to check in with one another and share what we are working on at the moment. My technical role in projects can vary, but often involves developing digital tools or models, for example to simulate rivers or water supply networks. My role can also include exploring and digesting primary or secondary data including model results, using geospatial and data analysis and my technical knowledge, supported by the many subject-matter experts we have across the practice. Finally, I also write reports or prepare and deliver presentations, to communicate project findings to our clients and their stakeholders.

The culture of skills development at AtkinsRéalis means I support other members of the team to develop their Python skills, something I have also benefitted from having joined Atkins as a coding novice and continue to learn something every day. Everyone is willing to give their time to help others - it’s a real pleasure to work with so many supportive and talented people.

My favourite aspect of my role is that I am able to work together with others to help solve real-world problems. Together, we work to ensure the quality, quantity and spatial distribution of water allows both people and planet to thrive in the face of the climate crisis and increasingly extreme weather events.

team sitting around lunch table

Senior Sustainability Consultant

I am a Senior Sustainability Consultant in AtkinsRéalis' Infrastructure division. A day in my life is an exciting amalgamation of leading and delivering projects on sustainable finance, climate risk assessments, net zero carbon, social value and sustainability assessments on major infrastructure projects for public and private sector clients.

My most recent exciting project in sustainable finance has been a study providing advisory services to the European Commission on the design of the EUR 54 billion European Fund for Sustainable Development Plus (EFSD+). The main aim of the study was to provide the European Commission with operational recommendations to use a part of the EFSD+ for leveraging additional private sector finance for climate adaptation in developing countries. My role was primarily to undertake a policy review and I was also the Engagement lead where over 4 months I secured and conducted interviews with ~90 experts globally. This included the EU delegates, international government officials from the government(s) of Tunisia, Zambia, Nigeria, Costa Rica, Chile, Saint Lucia, Nepal, Sri Lanka etc, some private sector organisations, key climate experts at multilateral development banks such as the EBRD, World Bank, KfW, IDB, IFC, climate funds and private investors.

As a passionate sustainability expert at AtkinsRéalis, my focus has been on leading the delivery and developing the thinking around embedding sustainability in the design of major infrastructure projects. Practically this means that I have championed the development and led the delivery of the carbon management plans, sustainability strategies, net zero pathway methodology, sustainability frameworks and key performance indicators (KPI’s) for public and private sector clients in the infrastructure sector. Some of my biggest infrastructure clients have included High Speed 2, Heathrow, Network Rail, TfL, Highways England, and some major water companies. More recently I have been closely involved in embedding social value in design alongside our key social value experts. As you can see Sustainability is very much at the heart of everything we do at AtkinsRéalis and we dearly care about creating positive impact through every project.

I also line manage and more importantly mentor some colleagues in the sustainability team. This involves supporting career development, mentoring Chartership applicants, actively collaborating with colleagues and leading the expansion of AtkinsRéalis' decarbonisation and sustainability expertise.

So if you are reading this and want to be part of our growing team, I strongly encourage you to please apply or get in touch with me or my colleagues to be the next valuable member of our team!

team sitting around lunch table

Ecologist

A day in the life as part of the AtkinsRéalis Ecology team can vary on a day to day basis, which is one of the reasons I enjoy my job so much. Some days you are in the office undertaking desk studies on recorded protected species in a new area of development, others you will be conducting the surveys to assess what protected species may be affected by the works.

Since working with AtkinsRéalis I have been involved in many projects, large or small. A thing I really enjoy about the involvement in these projects is that you really see them through from start to finish. You begin with a broad survey to determine what species could be affected by the proposed works/plans that have been provided, this is then followed by more detailed surveys for the specific highlighted species. After the licences are sort and species have been translocated you are then able to supervise the works being undertaken as an additional precautionary measure.

The Ecology team houses a great variety of specialisms, helping to provide you with a more diverse and well rounded knowledge. Outside of work, there are many sports and socials to join within your offices to broaden your networking outside of your direct team. Within our team we have enjoyed many socials, the most recent trip being a camping weekend near the River Wye.

team sitting around lunch table

Town Planner

I have been a Town Planner for 10 years and with AtkinsRéalis for 5 years, in my time at AtkinsRéalis I have progressed from Senior Planner to Associate Director enjoying a variety of roles including line manager, team leader, market integrator and regional practice manager, which have helped me understand and contribute to the running of the business. I have also led the Development Consent Order applications and examinations for schemes including the Wylfa Newydd New Nuclear Power Station and M25 Junction 10, and secured planning permissions for new sustainable communities on behalf of local authorities and Homes England.

Varied, Exciting and Challenging are the 3 words that come to mind when asked to describe a day in my life! Every day is different but a typical day might start with a coffee and browse of the thought leadership piece your colleague has written about NSIPs on our internal Yammer site or LinkedIn. Followed by a meeting with a client to discuss their priorities and how we can help them with a residential or infrastructure project, then research and preparing input for a bid or business development initiative. Lunchtime can be a walk to one of the local coffee shops for a natter about life in some of the most thriving places in the UK. The afternoon could include a meeting with people you line manage about the great work they are doing, followed by a review or authoring of a planning statement for a DCO or Residential scheme you are leading on. Just before you log off, there are always senior members of the team to support you with the technical or commercial question. What is clear from my time at AtkinsRéalis is that the Planning and Consenting team is at the forefront of what the business is trying to achieve and it aims to knit together our key priorities and support our clients in enabling sustainable energy, water, transportation and aviation infrastructure and creating thriving places.

We are a diverse and friendly national team, supporting each other in achieving the company’s sustainability goals and our own career development goals. My time at Atkins has been filled with variety, with a lot of laughs and a supportive culture and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a role in Planning consultancy.

team sitting around lunch table

Senior Environmental Consultant

The most brilliant aspect of day-to-day life as a Senior Environmental Consultant in the Contaminated Land & Hydrogeology team at AtkinsRéalis is that every day presents an opportunity to learn something new.

The breadth of project opportunities is truly remarkable; each day presents new problems to solve for our clients and opportunities for my personal and professional growth.

My current project portfolio includes the progression of risk assessments for legacy industrial sites - supporting our clients in managing and understanding their land contamination liabilities, the design and management of ground investigations on Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects, and providing support and advice to home builders aiming to transform derelict brownfield sites into large-scale residential developments.

Working for AtkinsRéalis means there is no limit to the type of project you may be involved in. You are given the opportunity to work at each stage of the project lifecycle across the energy, water, nuclear or cities & development markets.

Our contaminated land team is formed of countless brilliant geoscientists with a huge range of specialisms. Everyday gifts me with the opportunity to evolve and develop my technical and managerial expertise, working alongside a team of geologists, toxicologists, hydrogeologists, remediation specialists and project managers, whose experience and guidance is truly invaluable.

If you’re looking for a career in contaminated land, then I wouldn’t look any further than one here within our team at AtkinsRéalis.

team sitting around lunch table

Air Quality Consultant

A day in the life as part of the air quality practice has been always fascinating ever since my first day at AtkinsRéalis. After five years, I am still learning new things and being exposed to new ideas via a variety of projects and colleagues, not only those in my team but also across wider environmental and engineering disciplines. In return, it has been exciting to experience my personal growth as a consultant and see my ideas, skills and knowledge be transferred to deliver value for our clients and see contributions made towards air quality mitigation and protection.

The jobs that I work on are very diverse and this diversity can be both in the type of work and the process applied. For example, on one day I may be assessing the impact of industrial sources of pollutants, including modelling the plume dispersion from a stack, on another day the traffic emissions on roads or even shipping and odour. I get involved in the entire chain of air quality assessment processes, because I not only use monitoring and source data provided to me, to model a pollutant’s journey in the atmosphere to a receptor, but I also get out on site to set up and undertake sampling and measurement of the pollutants concerned and then apply novel analytical techniques to interpret the findings.

I take great satisfaction from delivering a comprehensive high quality air quality assessment report, which is one of our key tasks on daily basis. I also get to work with other environmental team members when delivering an EIA, engaging on emissions management options with our design and sustainability teams or using digital skills to create smarter ways of working. I love being part of a self-driven team that is always proactive and ready to rise to the new challenge in a constantly evolving field. I can see this will keep me interested in the long term too as there are always new pollutants to consider, or new standards to meet. I really enjoy working in engineering as it allows me to develop greater capability and confidence as a problem solver all along the project lifecycle, working together with others to make a real difference for our environment.

Our values

team sitting around lunch table

People focused

Our culture of care is second to none. We value everyone's opinions and promote collaboration in every project we work on. ​We promote a positive work-life balance and wholly support staff members in achieving the balance that works best for them. ​You can expect us to support you, both informally and formally, making it possible for you to achieve a happy balance of challenging yet satisfying work, while maintaining a healthy lifestyle both physically and mentally.

team sitting around lunch table

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion

We have a diverse team, which brings fresh ways of thinking, and innovation without compromising on quality. Find out more about our commitment to different makes a difference here, including our people-led and award-winning employee communities which offer support, advise and inspiration.     

Join our team

If you want to make a positive difference to a changing world, and work with the best in the industry, then join us and help deliver a better future for all.

Meet the leadership team:

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