Local Hire: Environmental Specialist

The World Bank

Maseru, Lesotho 🇱🇸


The Country Management Unit consists of seven countries under the Country Director based in Pretoria, South Africa, who is responsible for the World Bank’s program in Southern Africa (Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Zambia). The specialist will be based in Maseru and provide support to all operations primarily in Lesotho for effective application of Bank’s environmental safeguards policies and new Environmental and Social Framework. The selected candidate may also support operations in other CMU countries as needed.

The Specialist will be tasked with conducting the necessary environmental due diligence in Bank operations under preparation and implementation in compliance with the ten safeguards policies. In addition to and consistent with these safeguards policies, attention must be given to the Consultation and Disclosure requirements for safeguards instruments prepared in the context of projects’ preparation and implementation. 

With respect to scope of environment work program, currently there are over 60 investment projects in the CMU including 20 projects in Lesotho, which require environmental safeguard support.  The portfolio includes most Global Practices including energy, transport, water, agriculture, health, education, urban, climate change and environment.   Most of these projects have been assigned environment assessment Category B but include about 20% high risks projects (Category A). These projects require regular environmental safeguards support through close engagement with the client counterparts to ensure that environmental risks are identified early during project preparation, managed and supervised in accordance with the Bank’s safeguards policies.  The specialists will also participate along with other GP colleagues in dialogue on regional issues, such as water, energy and climate change; improving governance of natural resources, pollution management, and wealth accounting and valuation of ecosystem services.

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 3 year term appointment.

The World Bank Group (WBG) is seeking to recruit a highly qualified Environmental Specialist to be based in the World Bank Country Office in Maseru, Lesotho. The specialist will support the GP’s work on the application of environmental safeguard policies to Bank investment lending.  The Environmental Specialist will play an essential role in the application of the Bank’s environmental policies (i.e. Environmental Assessment (OP 4.01), Natural Habitats (OP 4.04), Pest Management (OP 4.09), Physical Cultural Resources (OP 4.11), Forests (OP 4.36), and Safety of Dams (OP 4.37)) and risk management under the new Environmental and Social Framework.  The specialist may also be ask to participate in the ENR GP’s activities in Clean and Resilient Growth, knowledge and learning initiatives.  
The Environmental Specialist will be part of a dynamic team of environment and natural resources management specialists working in the Global Practice. He/she will also provide technical expertise on a variety of environmental issues related to investment operations, and other instruments (i.e. Technical Assistance), including adaptation to climate change, natural resources management and green and inclusive growth. 
More specifically the Selected Specialist will be expected to:
  • Participate as team member for the preparation and implementation of various investment operations.  
  • Provide environmental safeguard support from identification through implementation.
  • Seek opportunities to integrate sound environmental risk management in various investment operations
  • Maintain regular dialogue with the clients and enhance their institutional capacity on environmental issues where feasible.  
  • Contribute to quality reviews within the Region and provide environmental inputs to project packages throughout project lifecycle.  
  • Participate in natural resource management projects and policy dialog with the government and other stakeholders in Lesotho.  
  • Coordinate and carry out other tasks as requested by the relevant Practice manager such as contribute to the organization of training, Learning and Knowledge sharing events.

Advanced degree (Masters or higher) in environmental management, environmental engineering, natural resources management or related fields, preferably with major in one or more of the following areas: Environmental Engineering, Water & Sanitation, Pollution and environmental health, forestry, watersheds and Landscape Management.In addition to meeting Bank-wide Grade GF level positions, it is expected that the successful candidate will meet the following selection criteria:

  • A minimum of 5 years of full-time relevant professional experience in the environment sector. 
  • Knowledge and experience in one or more of the following areas: environmental management, environmental engineering, Pollution & environmental health, integrated development planning in various sectors (e.g., water supply and sanitation; transport, energy, natural disaster management, rural development, Health). 
  • Experience working in middle income countries; understanding of the institutional and political context of environmental policy challenges.
  • International work experience would be an advantage. 
  • Proven teamwork and successful experience working with multi-disciplinary teams. 
  • Demonstrated project management and familiarity with Bank policies & procedures, including occupational health and safety management and the WBG Environmental Health and Safety Guidelines would be an advantage.
  • Experience working with a wide range of stakeholders, NGOs, private sector international organizations, development partners and/or with the government will be an advantage.
  • Fluency in English is required (excellent writing and speaking skills).
  • A strong sense of team work and ability to work independently with limited supervision.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills. 
  • Willingness to travel extensively in Southern Africa as necessary.
  • Competencies of Environmental Specialist:
    • Knowledge and Experience in successfully applying the environmental safeguard policies to high risk projects, especially infrastructure projects, in sectors such as Energy, Transport, Agriculture, Urban and Water & Sanitation.
    • Ability to apply technical knowledge on the job and provide inputs to country and sector strategies;  
    • Basic understanding of environmental policies, strategies, institutions, and regulations.  Climate change adaptation strategies.
    • Environmental Sciences – Basic experience applying knowledge (air pollution and meteorology; soil science; water; ecosystems; conservation; agriculture concerns, etc.) to policy-related decisions and advice.