Research Scientist (Water Pollution)

New York Department of Environmental Conservation

Syracuse, NY, US

Contro Number 17-085+
Application Due By 03/17/2017
Title Research Scientist 3 Area of Specialty: Water Pollution
Location: City
DEC Region
Region 7
Water/Water Assessment & Mgmt.
$76,748 – $96,732 Effective 04/15
Work Hours Days
Work Days Mon. – Fri.
Employment Type Permanent Budgeted Item
Appointment Type Permanent/Non-Competitive
Jurisdictional Class Non-competitive+
Bargaining Unit/MC PS&T 05 (PEF)

1. Direct and manage a team of research scientists and watershed experts (in a unit called the Finger Lakes Water Hub) to leverage research efforts; and to plan, coordinate, implement and assess the effectiveness of water quality projects to improve water quality within the Finger Lakes. The immediate focus will be on pollution reduction and prevention of Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) but will expand to other emerging water quality issues and contaminants. (30%)

2. Develop and oversee a sound and comprehensive research plan for biological and chemical monitoring of the water quality in the Finger Lakes. Activities will include study design, field research, data analysis and interpretation of analytical results (20%)

3. Collaborate with other Research Scientists within the Division to compare and evaluate the relative effectiveness of practices based on available data. Determine achievable water pollutant load reductions by applying stream stabilization measures, riparian stream buffers, and in-waterbody best management practices (BMPs), including the evaluation and assessments of the cost effectiveness of such practices. Where adequate data exists, make recommendations on the most effective practices. Where there is not enough data to make scientifically based recommendations, develop proposals to obtain such data. (10%)

4. Independently and in collaboration with other Research Scientists in the Division of Water and Finger Lakes unit, conduct research and assess research conducted by partners such as the Finger Lakes Institute at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and the Upstate Freshwater Institute. Coordinate, conduct, direct, and develop research projects to fill data gaps and verify existing scientific research and data to help evaluate and solve the complex issues within New York’s Finger Lakes. (10%)

5. Initiate, conduct, and complete applied research on effective riparian buffer implementation to meeting water quality goals, including documenting relationships between habitat, pollutant loading and stressor response. Partner with various stakeholders to assist in funding and implementing identified watershed improvement activities including the Finger Lakes-Lake Ontario Watershed Protection Alliance (FLLOWPA), lake management associations, Soil & Water Conversation Districts and other stakeholders involved with research and protection of the Finger Lakes watershed. (10%)

6. Through data assessment, recommend and direct BMPs and land use practices that will effect pollutant load reductions from agricultural and non-agricultural lands. Specific areas of research may include riparian setbacks and buffers, reforestation, stream bank stabilization, and working with MS4 communities to improve local storm drainage and road maintenance. (10%)

7. Present the results of research in peer-reviewed journals and at scientific meetings.(5%)

8. Participate in the Division of Water’s research-related workgroups (5%)

Minimum Qualifications

Strictly adhered to based on Civil Service requirements

Qualifications include a Bachelor’s degree and four years of professional experience as it relates to research in the fields of non-point source water pollution control, algal toxins or watershed management; or a Master’s degree and three years of such experience or a doctorate in the appropriate field and one year of such experience.

Strong public speaking skills and ability to describe complex issues to stakeholders and the public in simple terms.

Strong writing skills and experience with competitive grants and contracting.

Good understanding of NYS water quality standards, regulations and Division of Water technical, operational and guidance documents.

Knowledge of the nonpoint source impacts from Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) and Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) and other non-agricultural related sources.

Additional Comments

Governor Cuomo recently announced the formation of a Finger Lakes Water Hub at NYSDEC. The new Water Hub will focus on planning, coordinating and implementing state-led environmental quality projects within the Finger Lakes sub-watershed of New York’s overall Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River region. This new action furthers the efforts of the Governor’s Water Quality Rapid Response Team to swiftly address water quality issues and develop new policies, programs and technologies to ensure clean water for all New Yorkers. This action also enhances state efforts to implement the state-funded Great Lakes Action Agenda and the federally-funded Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Action Plan, both of which geographically encompass Central NY’s Lake Ontario/Finger Lakes region, as well as integrating technical knowledge and program resources with the adjacent Susquehanna River/Chesapeake Bay Action Plan and Mohawk River Action Plan. The mission of DEC’s new Finger Lakes Water Hub is to bring people together to share expertise and find the solutions necessary to protect these important resources in upstate New York. Must have valid driver’s license or demonstrate the ability to meet the transportation needs of the position. Must be able to negotiate difficult terrain and work in remote areas and adverse weather conditions. Travel 15% and overnight travel may be required. Must be able to lift and move objects up to 25 pounds.

To Apply Qualified candidates should forward a resume and/or Employment Application which clearly indicates how the minimum qualifications are meet and includes the Control Number. If you are applying for more than one posting, you must submit a separate resume or Employment Application for each control number. Send to:

Department of Environmental Conservation
625 Broadway
Albany, New York 12233-5060

Fax: (518) 402-9038

E-Mail: [email protected]