The first steps of a beginner ecologist

Remembering myself in the first 2 weeks of working as an ecologist, I fully understand the panic of a beginner environmental specialist. You came to a new team, you have to work, but what to do and how – is completely incomprehensible. When I came to the office on my first working day, they showed me a table covered with folders, and the manager announced to me: “I do not know what to do, but all that is left of previous ecologists is understand.” That was a panic! The first 2-3 weeks just boiled! And the most difficult thing that no one had to ask, since the ecologist, as a rule, is alone in the enterprise! Probably everyone in the work had such a situation.

Therefore, I decided to write a few tips for beginners!

  • Most importantly – do not panic! The more panic, the less useful! Try to get acquainted with colleagues, find out how the work in the office is arranged, observe people, do not snatch at all and at once, all the same you will not have time!
  • Normative documents in the field of ecology! This is something without which a specialist ecologist cannot do anything at all! The basis for your activity in the field of ecology is legislation relating to environmental issues. In this regard, it is necessary to have access to and study the current laws, regulations, etc. The simplest way is to create a regulatory framework for yourself, on which you can leverage and track changes.
  • The Internet! There are several excellent sites where you can get information in an accessible form, simply and understandably.
  • Sites with supervisory bodies. For a beginner ecologist incredibly useful.

It should also be taken into account that according to the specifics of any enterprise, there are main directions of its impact on the environment.

These are:

  • pollution of atmospheric air, water resources, soils;
  • use of natural resources;
  • physical factors (noise, heat radiation, etc.).

In order to determine what impact the environment has on the enterprise, and, accordingly, what legislative acts govern its activities, it is necessary to study the enterprise: its structure, production processes, available documentation on environmental issues.

With what to begin?

Armed with the scheme of the organization’s territory with the location of buildings and structures, I recommend making a detour around the territory of the enterprise. The main purposes of this workaround are:

  • familiarization with the activities of the enterprise;
  • familiarity with responsible persons at work;
  • detection of existing violations (of course, it is difficult to judge about them, but you try).

It is advisable to invite with someone from the production, for example, the chief engineer. This person, as a rule, is always up to date on current events.

On an excursion, we pay attention to waste: what waste is generated, how it is stored, whether there is a temporary storage area, how many containers are installed, etc.

We are looking for sources of emissions. Under the pipes may be blacksmiths, boiler rooms, treatment equipment – all these are stationary sources of emissions.

It is important to find a reset point. Maybe in a water body, or maybe just in a well, coordinated with a water canal.

In passing, we study technology in conversations. What, in fact, does your enterprise do, what is the technology, what equipment and raw materials are used.

After orientation on the ground, you need to look at the documents that are left in the office.

The list of internal documentation, which should be in one form or another is given below:

  • Instructions and regulations. Are they approved, with whom are agreed.
  • Orders, whom and for what was appointed responsible.
  • Trained – whom, what and when they were trained.
  • Correspondence with supervisory authorities.
  • Analysis protocols (production control – it happens on water, soil and air, there are still various sanitary controls).
  • Agreements for the transfer of waste (landfill, mercury lamps, oils, batteries, etc., depending on the list of wastes).

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