A day in the life at Temple… Air Quality Consultant
As an Air Quality Consultant at Temple, my work largely involves completing Air Quality Assessments (AQAs) for a variety of sectors including property projects, ranging from housing developments to infrastructure schemes, as well as highways, agricultural, and energy generation/utility schemes. I also undertake reviews of Environmental Statements (ESs) that have been submitted to support planning applications, and also help write the Air Quality chapters of various ES works.
Perhaps something most people wouldn’t think about is the scope of air quality related issues impacting people and the environment every day. The most common, and possibly well known, is the impact of transport related emissions on human health and the environment. However, there are numerous other areas that have similar impacts including particulate matter (PM) / dust emissions associated with demolition and construction, indoor air quality relating to ventilation and materials used in furniture, etc., and odour related emissions which may cause a nuisance to local communities, to name a few. All of these will require their own assessment which comes with differing methodologies and assessment techniques. As such, one of the best aspects of being an Air Quality Consultant is the variety in everyday work and the large range of skills you build up whilst undertaking assessments.
A typical day will involve writing or reviewing reports and attending calls and meetings about the various projects I have going on. For example, a typical morning might be checking in with the Air Quality team to discuss workloads and if there’s anything anyone needs assistance with, then moving on to review some traffic data and write the policy and baseline sections of a report before attending a training session on one of the pieces of modelling software we use. The afternoon might then be comprised of liaising with the client, local authority, and site manager regarding a dust monitoring or odour survey and then doing additional work on assessments or possibly reviewing another team member’s work or an ES chapter.
On days when I’m waiting to receive data that will enable me to complete an assessment or waiting for work to be reviewed, there are lots of opportunities to undertake training to learn new assessment techniques, learn to use new modelling software, or read and review the latest industry guidance, etc. There are also opportunities for marketing the team’s Air Quality services and developing my skills outside of being an Air Quality Consultant through business development. Occasionally, there are also requirements to undertake site visits and monitoring work including diffusion tube surveys, setting up and maintaining dust monitors, odour surveys (also known as ‘sniff tests’), and indoor air quality surveys.
The variety and scope of projects I get involved with whilst working as an Air Quality Consultant mean that there is always something to be doing and learning at Temple. This variety means that one week is rarely the same as another and helps to keep me interested and excited for what is to come next.