Environmental consulting is often a form of compliance
A consultant (from la, consultare "to deliberate") is a professional
A professional is a member of a profession or any person who earns their living from a specified professional activity. The term also describes the standards of education and ...
, in which the consultant ensures that the client maintains an appropriate measure of compliance with environmental regulation
s. There are many types of environmental consultants, but the two main groups are those who enter the field from the industry side, and those who enter the field from the
Image:Voynet Montreuil 2008-01-06.jpg, Dominique Voynet, 2008
An environmentalist is a person who is concerned with and/or advocates for the protection of the environment. An environmentalist can be considered a supporter of the goals of the envir ...
Environmental consultants work in a very wide variety of fields. Whether it be providing
Construction is a general term meaning the art and science to form Physical object, objects, systems, or organizations,"Construction" def. 1.a. 1.b. and 1.c. ''Oxford English Dictionary'' Second Edition on CD-ROM (v. 4.0) Oxford University Pre ...
services such as
Asbestos (pronounced: or ) is a naturally occurring fibrous silicate mineral. There are six types, all of which are composed of long and thin fibrous crystals, each fibre being composed of many microscopic "fibrils" that can be released into ...
Hazard Assessments or Lead Hazard Assessments or conducting due
Diligence—carefulness and persistent effort or work—is one of the seven heavenly virtues. It is indicative of a work ethic, the belief that work is good in itself.
Bernard et al. suggest that diligence in students is defined ...
reports for customers to rid them of possible sanctions. Consultancies may generalize across a wide range of disciplines or specialize in certain areas of environmental consultancy such as
Waste management (or waste disposal) includes the activities and actions required to manage waste
Waste (or wastes) are unwanted or unusable materials. Waste is any substance which is discarded after primary use, or is worthless, d ...
Environmental consultants usually have an
An undergraduate degree (also called first degree or simply degree) is a colloquial term for an academic degree earned by a person who has completed undergraduate courses. In the United States, it is usually offered at an institution of higher edu ...
and sometimes even
A master's degree (from Latin ) is an academic degree awarded by University, universities or colleges upon completion of a course of study demonstrating mastery or a high-order overview of a specific field of study or area of Profession, professiona ...
Environmental engineering is a job type that is a professional engineering discipline and takes from broad scientific topics like chemistry
Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compoun ...
Environmental science is an interdisciplinary academic field that integrates physical, biological and information science
Information science (also known as information studies) is an academic field which is primarily concerned with analy ...
Environmental studies, a term first coined by George Perkins Marsh in his book '' Man and Nature,'' is a multidisciplinary academic field which systematically studies human interaction with the environment. Environmental studies connects princip ...
Geology (from the Ancient Greek γῆ, ''gē'' ("earth") and -λoγία, ''-logia'', ("study of", "discourse")) is an Earth science concerned with the solid Earth, the rock (geology), rocks of which it is composed, and the processes by which th ...
, or some other science discipline. They should have deep knowledge on environmental regulations, which they can advise particular clients in the private industry or public government institutions to help them steer clear of possible fines, legal action or misguided transactions.
Environmental consulting spans a wide spectrum of industry. The most basic industry that environmental consulting remains prominent in is the commercial estate market. Many commercial lenders rely on both small and large environmental firms. Many commercial lenders will not lend monies to borrowers if the property or personal capital does not exceed the worth of the land. If an environmental problem is discovered property owners that deem themselves a responsible party will most likely reserve monies in escrow in order to resolve the environmental impact.
With increasing numbers of construction,
Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentism, sedentary human civilization, whereby farming of domestication, domesticated species created food ...
, and scientific companies employing environmental consultancies, the industry can expect growth in the vicinity of 9.7 percent in 2008, amidst mounting public concern over
environmental degradation Eighty-plus years after the abandonment of Wallaroo Mines (Kadina, South Australia), mosses remain the only vegetation at some spots of the site's grounds.
Environmental degradation is the deterioration of the environment (biophysical), environmen ...
and climate change. And while some companies are genuinely motivated by concern for the environment, for others, hiring consultants to appear to be "going green" has proven to be a useful marketing tool. Growing government funding into renewable energy and technologies producing low emissions is also helping growth, as organizations investing in research and development in these areas are often major employers of environmental consultants.The Recession List - Top 10 Industries to Fly and Fl... (or growth together with growth inNorth A...)
There are numerous areas in which environmental consultants might work (in no particular order):
Contaminated Land can involve assessments such as a Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment.
Energy may entail feasibility studies for renewable energy projects. For example, a study may attempt to answer the question: Would a micro-hydro-generation scheme pay for itself over the course of its operational life?
Geotechnical might include activities such as site investigations, geotechnical engineering (foundation design, slope stability), and restoration quality assurance.
Environmental Management Systems such as ISO 14001 are large complicated systems that are often not implemented using internal man/woman power. This work is usually outsourced to consultants.
Green Claims: Environmental Consultants may be employed to substantiate green claims, such as eco labels, which may involve work on supply chain or embodied carbon.
Compliance: As governments become more and more environmental in their thinking, so do their legal framework. In the UK, businesses are covered by numerous pieces of legislation such as oil storage regulations and the Environment Act 1995. If they are found to be in breach of these regulations, they may face severe civil or criminal actions. Environmental Consultants can check to see that the business in question is in compliance with current legislation.
Impact Assessment: see Environmental impact statement
Flood risk assessment, Flood Risk, the most common of which may be a Phase 1 Screening Study.
Asbestos (pronounced: or ) is a naturally occurring fibrous silicate mineral. There are six types, all of which are composed of long and thin fibrous crystals, each fibre being composed of many microscopic "fibrils" that can be released into ... Management
Carbon: There are various aspects of a company's carbon foot print that may be managed by consultants. They may have internal reduction strategies, or they may be tied in with national targets. Emissions trading is also an important aspect of Carbon Management.
International Society of Sustainability Professionals
Environmental law, Consulting