Local hire: Senior Environmental Specialist

Buenos Aires, , AR

Background / General description:

Sustainable environment and natural resources management (ENRM) is at the heart of the WBG’s poverty agenda. Biodiversity and natural resources constitute the social safety net of the poor, representing a food bank and often their only source of livelihood.   Sustainable ENRM promotes a green, clean, and resilient world where natural resources – from forests to fisheries, freshwater, oceans, coastal zones and ecosystems – are managed to support livelihoods and strong economies. Sustainable ENRM builds a world better prepared for shocks and global challenges, helping countries limit their exposure to resource scarcity, more-volatile weather patterns, and the long-term consequences of climate change.
The Environment & Natural Resources (ENR) Global Practice has been set-up to deliver on the opportunities, benefits and outcomes offered by enhanced management of the environment and natural resources. The ENR GP has close to 300 operations under management, representing close to $7 billion, and a growing pipeline of new investments under active development. The practice consists of some 275 staff across the world plus numerous other staff in other Practices and CCSAs that are professionally associated with it.
The Environment & Natural Resources Global Practice has three broad and distinct functions:
1. Provides clients with lending and non-lending services aimed to support the GP’s three core business lines, namely: (i) Forests, Watersheds and Sustainable Landscapes; (ii) Marine, Coastal and Aquatic Resources; and (iii) Pollution Management and Environmental Health. The GP’s activities also include a focus on Clean and Resilient Growth through its work on environmental economics and support to institutional development.
2. Supports effective environmental risk management and sustainability by managing risk at the project level and creating opportunities to advance sustainable development, in part through the implementation of the Bank’s environmental policies.
3. Works closely with other sectors, including by leveraging GEF grant financing, to mainstream environmental considerations into their policies, strategies, and operations.
Regional Context

The Latin America and Caribbean Region (LCR) unit of the ENR GP (GEN04), comprises of about 35 professionals, based in LCR country offices and Washington DC, HQ working on a dynamic program in all the areas of ENR business lines outlined above. This includes cutting-edge portfolio, lending pipeline and non-lending technical assistance in all ENR business lines, from green growth, blue economy and the brown agenda. The demand for the unit services in the Southern Cone (Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay) has increased significantly over the past years, as it manages the largest operation in the ENR GP portfolio (US$718m Argentina Matanza-Riachuelo Basin Sustainable Development project); and, a growing and complex program of safeguards services, in collaboration with other GPs both through and beyond safeguards.

Note: If the selected candidate is a current Bank Group staff member with a Regular or Open-Ended appointment, s/he will retain his/her Regular or Open-Ended appointment. All others will be offered a 2 year term appointment.

Duties and Accountabilities:

The ENR GP is seeking a highly qualified Senior Environmental Specialist who will provide environmental risk management support to World Bank projects in LCR, and in particular the Southern Cone (Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay), with cross-support to the Andean countries (e.g. Chile, Bolivia) amongst others. The specialist would be based in the World Bank office in Buenos Aires, Argentina work closely with the Regional Environmental Safeguards Coordinator, and report to the Practice Manager for ENR LCR.  The specialist would provide environmental impact/risk management project support in the following areas:
•    Identifying, reviewing and appraising new Bank investment proposals and ensuring that environmental issues are properly addressed by development of project-specific environmental analysis which may include issues related to environmental assessments,  natural habitats, pest management, forests, safety of dams, projects on international waterways, public consultations, and occupational health and safety;
•    Supervising (implementation support) of Bank operations related to Bank environmental safeguard policies and project-specific environmental requirements;
•    Providing expert guidance to borrowers/clients in the preparation and successful implementation of project environmental assessment instruments/documentation, including Terms of Reference for the preparation of environmental instruments, such as environmental impact/risk assessments, environmental management plans, environmental management frameworks;
•    Providing expert advice to Bank project teams and Bank management with regard to strategies and approaches to effectively and efficiently comply with relevant Bank environmental safeguard operational policies and requirements, and assist in the development of required Bank documentation related to Bank operations;
•    Seeking and developing opportunities to improve and integrate sound environmental management and policies in Bank operations, including improving environmental benefits and providing value-added service, and the capacities of relevant local clients and other stakeholders;
•    Coordinating and sharing information with Bank staff and consultants providing environmental risk management project support; and
•    Contributing as required to the broader work of ENR GP on improving environmental sustainability.
The specialist will be required as needed to provide a range of technical support to Bank projects and activities, including the following potential areas:
•    Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA);
•    Environmental Management Plan (EMP);
•    Environmental Management Frameworks;
•    Other forms of environmental assessments/analysis;
•    Environmental risk analysis and management;
•    Occupation health and safety management;
•    Environmental, occupational health, and safety laws, regulations and requirements;
•    Bank environmental safeguard requirements and approaches/strategies for assuring compliance in Bank financed projects;
•    Design and implementation of mitigation strategies in areas of risk;
•    Project design in order to improve environmental benefits (positive impacts) and outcomes of the project;
•    Engineering principals, practices, and methods and their application to environmental work;
•    Design, construction, operation, and maintenance of infrastructure in relation to environmental, health and safety management; and  
•    Environmental management and pollution control, including wastewater treatment, hazardous and solid waste, air pollution, environmental monitoring systems, public health impacts, environmental remediation, soil and groundwater investigation and remediation, emergency and contingency planning and response, environmental management systems, and health and safety management systems.
The specialist may also provide project management and technical support to ENR GP environmental projects, which could include:
•    Serve as project Task Team Leader or technical specialist in ENR GP projects.
•    Lead, or participate as a member, of Bank missions (preparation, appraisal, supervision), conducts independent technical discussions with client representatives on selected problems and issues identified by task managers.
•    Provide overall project management, including client management, scheduling and budgeting, financial management, procurement, and project team management;
•    Provide technical support in sectors such as environment, water and waste water, industrial pollution, waste management, or urban development.
•    Project supervision and regular monitoring of project implementation including helping resolve emerging issues to ensure results on the ground and project implementation progress;
•    Provide cross-support to other sector units in the design, implementation and supervision of project, as identified;
•    Knowledge sharing; contribute specific professional knowledge both in the assigned countries and within the Bank on environmental issues.


In addition to meeting Bank-wide competencies for Grade GG level positions, it is expected that the successful candidate will meet the following selection criteria:

• A Masters or PhD Degree in environmental sciences, engineering or other relevant discipline;
• A minimum of eight years of full-time relevant experience including the preparation and/or review of project environmental impact assessments, environmental management plans, capacity assessment and institutional strengthening, public consultation plans, health and safety management/plans, emergency/contingency plans, or other related project environmental plans/studies, environmental project management;
• Knowledge and experience related to environmental impact assessment and management in various sectors, such as water supply and sanitation, energy, transportation, urban development, natural disaster management, agriculture and rural development, health, and education.
• Understanding of the environmental regulatory and institutional framework in LCR countries;
• Knowledge and experience with Bank environmental safeguard policies and procedures (environmental assessments,  natural habitats, pest management, forests, physical cultural resources, and safety of dams);
• Project management skills, including client management, scheduling and budgeting, financial management, procurement, and project team management;
• Preferably knowledge of relevant Bank operational policies and experience in identifying, preparing, appraising, and supervising financial institution operations;
• Ability to effectively communicate and provide guidance to Bank teams and clients;
• Proven ability to articulate the development rationale for safeguards and a commitment to implementing the policies in a manner which is both pragmatic but fully respects the intent of the policies;
• Proven ability to exercise sound judgments in a work environment with tight processing constraints;
• Excellent interpersonal, problem-solving, and diplomatic skills, and the ability to effectively negotiate and achieve balanced solutions to complex development problems;
• Experience with the planning and conduct of training programs for external and internal audiences concerning environmental risk/safeguards management;
• Demonstrated skills and commitment to: Client Orientation; Drive for Results; Teamwork (collaboration) and Inclusion; Knowledge, Learning and Communication; and Business Judgment and Analytical Decision Making;
• Excellent writing and communication skills;
• Fluency in Spanish and English; and
• Knowledge of relevant software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.)