Port Ecologist

Dublin Port Company
Competitive remuneration package
Dublin, Ireland
14 February 2020

Please email a CV and cover letter here

Permanent contract (after a 12 month probationary period).  Member of Port EHS Group reporting to the Chief Executive.

Context

  • Dublin Port is the busiest port in the country with 16,500 annual vessel movements
  • The Port handles 88% of national Ro-Ro and 73% of national Lo-Lo traffic and approaching two-thirds of petroleum consumed in Ireland comes through the Port.
  • The basic infrastructure of the Port is upgraded and added to on the basis of Masterplan 2040 and it is envisaged that the Port will reach full capacity by 2040.
  • In addition to the objective of providing sufficient port capacity to cater for projected growth, Masterplan 2040 also has a core objective to re-integrate the Port with the City based on the Port’s heritage and culture.
  • Dublin Port is located in the environmentally sensitive and protected area of Dublin Bay and is surrounded on the land side by densely populated urban and suburban communities.
  • DPC has committed in the Masterplan to develop and implement a Natural Capital policy as a means to achieving the sustainability of Port operations and development.
  • Port plans and projects are subject to detailed environmental analysis including SEA, EIA and AA and these require comprehensive, authoritative and lengthy data time series showing the condition and trends in habitats and species.
  • DPC actively engages with local communities and groups to tell the story of the Port to ensure that key stakeholders understand the Port’s importance and relevance.

Qualifications, experience & required skills/expertise

  • NFQ Level 8 (or equivalent) science qualification in a relevant area
  • Relevant Masters or doctoral qualification is desirable 
  • Ten years’ experience in researching, monitoring and managing habitats
  • An understanding and belief in the Natural Capital approach to compensate for the consumption of non-renewable resources and environmental degradation caused by port operations and development
  • A proven ability to enthusiastically and convincingly communicate verbally and in writing

Baseline ecological data

  • It is essential that DPC understands, measures and reports on the condition of habitats and species of all types in Dublin Port and in areas contiguous to the Port (notably in the Dublin Bay Biosphere).
  • A comprehensive database of the condition and performance of habitats and species, particularly those with Natura 2000 protection, must be maintained and available for the preparation of reports needed for a variety of consent processes.

Development of habitats

  • Port operations and construction works potentially impact the natural environment in a number of aspects including flora and fauna in the marine and terrestrial environments.  These impacts need to be understood, measured and mitigated.
  • DPC must routinely create new habitats and increase biodiversity in Dublin Port and in areas contiguous to the Port (notably in the Dublin Bay Biosphere).

Natural Capital

  • DPC has committed to developing a Natural Capital Policy
  • This policy must be relevant and bespoke to the Port’s requirements while also remaining compatible with best practice elsewhere.
  • The degradation of the natural environment as a result of port operations and development must be recorded.
  • The consumption of non-renewable natural capital must be understood.
  • An appropriate level of natural capital must be created to offset degradation and consumption of non-renewables.

Representation

  • DPC must be professionally represented in meetings with State / public bodies such as DCC, Dublin Bay Biosphere and the EPA and solid relationships developed and maintained.
  • Solid collaborative relationships must be maintained with organisations such as NPWS, BirdWatch Ireland, the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, Coastwatch and the Irish Forum on Natural Capital.
  • DPC must work closely with universities and partake in and promote research.
  • DPC needs to be at the forefront in understanding the Natural Capital approach elsewhere both nationally and internationally (in the port sector) through participation and collaboration with environmental and port representative organisations such as ESPO.

Communication

  • The condition and trends in habitats and species and of DPC’s impact (positive and negative) on them must be communicated to a wide range of stakeholders including in an annual Sustainability Report.
  • Periodic scientifically robust and detailed reports on habitats and species are essential to ensure that the organisation gives appropriate focus in areas where problems are emerging.

Consent process

  • It is essential comprehensive data is available for the preparation of environmental analysis for consent processes of various types.
  • The work of external experts in the preparation of applications for consents must be rigorously evaluated and challenged to ensure DPC maintains a robust and coherent approach to managing impact on the natural environment.

TOP ACCOUNTABILITIES

  • Develop a coherent Natural Capital policy relevant to the circumstances of Dublin Port.
  • Monitor and measure the performance of habitats and species.
  • Devise and implement projects which increase biodiversity and increase the natural capital in the Port and in areas contiguous to the Port (notably in the Dublin Bay Biosphere)
  • Establish strong working relationships with State bodies, NGOs and universities.
  • Preparation of an annual Sustainability Report in collaboration with others.

BARRIERS TO SUCCESS IN ROLE

  • DPC fails to develop a concise and coherent Natural Capital policy.
  • There is an evident diminution in biodiversity in the Port and in areas contiguous to the Port over time.
  • Trends in the conditions of habitats and species are not understood.
  • Projects to augment Natural Capital are not routinely designed and implemented.
  • Inability to work as part of collaborative multi-disciplinary teams.
  • DPC’s commitment to protect and enhance the natural environment is not understood within the company or among key stakeholders.

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