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AECOM Principal Aquatic Ecologist in Leeds, United Kingdom

Job Summary

At AECOM, we’re delivering a better world.

We believe infrastructure creates opportunity for everyone. Whether it’s improving your commute, keeping the lights on, providing access to clean water or transforming skylines, our work helps people and communities thrive.

Our clients trust us to bring together the best people, ideas, technical expertise and digital solutions to our work in transportation, buildings, water, the environment and new energy. We’re one global team – 47,000 strong – driven by a common purpose to deliver a better world.

Here, you will have freedom to grow in a world of opportunity. AECOM has a Freedom to Grow policy that celebrates flexible working; if you are interested in joining us, we should be happy to discuss a working arrangement to suit you

We are looking for an experienced Principal Aquatic Ecologist to join the Water Environment and Aquatic Ecology Team at AECOM. We have multi-disciplinary offices throughout the UK, and you would play a key role in managing and providing technical expertise for new and existing projects, and in the continued growth and development of our successful team.

The successful applicant will have a good understanding of many areas of freshwater ecology including biological water quality and WFD parameters, fisheries ecology, survey design, mitigation, and reporting, and the wider consideration of aquatic ecology in Planning and Impact Assessment. They will be able to analyse and interpret survey data and provide robust technical opinion based on this, including impact assessment for EcIA.

You will join a growing, friendly, and highly motivated team, and contribute to a diverse range of projects; baseline data collection for major infrastructure and utility projects, habitat restoration projects for regulators and the private sector, pollution response surveys, and water quality investigations, etc.

A key responsibility will be to co-ordinate the activity of junior team members in the field and laboratories, author, and review reports, develop monitoring strategies, and provide specialist input to multi-disciplinary teams. The appointee would work closely with the Aquatic Team leader in the Nottingham office and our UK Aquatic Ecology, Water Environment, and multi-disciplinary teams to support a coherent nationwide approach providing expert advice to our clients.

We have excellent career progression opportunities within AECOM and working with the Water Environment Team management you will have the opportunity to influence how the team continues to grow and develop. Technically you will have a good understanding of all disciplines of freshwater ecology to potentially include hydromorphology and fish passage, fish ecology, macroinvertebrates, macrophytes and algae in freshwater habitats.

Role Responsibilities:

  • You would contribute to projects including aquatic ecology components for a range of clients by:

  • Playing an important role in a team of multi-skilled aquatic ecologists in AECOM’s nationwide offices and laboratories;

  • Supporting the Team Leader with business development;

  • Providing technical leadership in the UK for aquatic ecology in your area of expertise;

  • Providing aquatic ecology input into EcIA, planning, mitigation, and multi-disciplinary projects;

  • Mentoring and line managing junior staff;

  • Authoring and reviewing technical reports, working with multi-disciplinary teams to provide specialist input;

  • Developing data analysis and processing;

  • The production of Ecological Impact Assessment documents in line with CIEEM guidelines;

  • Managing aquatic ecology input into projects, including survey design and costing;

  • Supporting the wider environmental business.

Minimum Requirements

  • Experience of ecological impact assessment (EcIA/EIA);

  • Experience of WFD compliance assessment;

  • Understanding of industry standard monitoring techniques and analyses for aquatic ecology, including macroinvertebrates, fish surveys, etc., and associated consenting/permitting requirements;

  • Understanding of industry standard WFD-compliant monitoring techniques and analyses for macroinvertebrates, macrophytes, and/or phytobenthos;

  • Familiar with legislation relating to the aquatic environment and its implementation, particularly the Water Framework Directive;

  • Good personal time management, communication skills with internal and external clients and team members locally and nationally;

  • Willingness to learn new skills and contribute to nationally significant infrastructure projects, working with our multi-disciplinary teams;

Additional desirable but not essential attributes for the role:

  • Experience of surveying and identifying fish and other aquatic flora and fauna;

  • River Corridor / River Habitat Survey (RHS);

  • Experience of requirements for fish passage improvements, including fish pass and screening design, installation, and monitoring;

  • Experience of HRA and Appropriate Assessment;

  • Wider Ecology survey experience, e.g., Phase 1 habitat survey, protected species etc.;

  • Specific practical skills relevant to the role, e.g., RYA Powerboat Handling Level 2, 4x4 driving, etc.;

  • First Aid at Work qualification;

  • CSCS Card.

Preferred Qualifications

  • A higher degree in Aquatic Ecology or related discipline;

  • Previous commercial and/or regulatory experience in an aquatic ecology role

The value of diversity and inclusion is readily apparent in creating a collaborative, supportive working environment and in delivering innovative, contextually appropriate projects. It is very important to both what we do and the way we do it. We welcome applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. The important thing for us is that you can demonstrate that you can effectively fulfil the needs of the role. If you feel you can fulfil the requirements of the role, but there are other factors that are making you hesitant in applying, we would still like to hear from you and see if we can work together to overcome any challenges.

Your benefits will include:

Helping our employees achieve a healthy work-life balance is important to us. If you join AECOM, as well as receiving a competitive salary, you’ll also have the opportunity to explore flexible working arrangements. Core benefits include 25 days’ annual leave, company pension scheme, private medical insurance, life assurance and one paid annual professional institution membership fee. You can also choose from a wide range of flexible benefits to suit your lifestyle.

You’ll also be able to give back to communities with up to two paid CSR days each year. Through our charity, The AECOM Foundation, you can volunteer to support children in developing countries. And if you’re a member of the Reserve Forces you’ll receive an additional 15 days paid leave for training commitments.

What We Offer

We will give you the flexibility you need to do your best work with hybrid work options. Whether you’re working from an AECOM office, remote location or at a client site, you will be working in a dynamic environment where your integrity, entrepreneurial spirit and pioneering mindset are championed.

You will help us foster a culture of equity, diversity and inclusion – a safe and respectful workplace, where we invite everyone to bring their whole selves to work using their unique talents, backgrounds and expertise to create transformational outcomes for our clients.

We will encourage you to grow and develop your career with us through our technical and professional development programs and diverse career opportunities. We believe in leadership at all levels. No matter where you sit in the organization you can make a lasting impact on the projects you work on, the teams and committees you join and our business.

We offer competitive pay and benefits, well-being programs to support you and your family, and the development resources you need to advance your career.

When you join us, you will connect and collaborate with a global network of experts – planners, designers, engineers, scientists, consultants, program and construction managers – leading the change toward a more sustainable and equitable future. Join us and let’s get started.

As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we believe in each person’s potential, and we’ll help you reach yours.

Job Category Ecology

Business Line Environment

Business Group Design and Consulting Services Group (DCS)

Country United Kingdom

Position Status Full Time

Requisition/Vacancy No. 263967BR

Additional Locations UK - Basingstoke, UK - Bristol - Portwall Place, UK - Leeds

Virtual: No

Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or protected veteran status.

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