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Senior Environmental Safety Assessor

Please Note: The application deadline for this job has now passed.

Job Introduction

Job Description for Senior Environmental Safety Assessor:

NNL is where you’ll experiment to help solve global challenges. As part of our Waste Management & Decommissioning capability, your work will impact the lives of generations. By finding new ways to avoid, reduce, store and treat nuclear waste, and drive down the cost of decommissioning, you’ll help to deliver cleaner energy and influence our nation’s energy future. You’ll face new challenges every day, working in unique locations on ground-breaking projects. Whichever area you specialise in this is a place to do great science for a good cause.

This role is for a suitably qualified and experienced environmental safety assessor (Discipline Technical Lead) in the NNL Environmental Science team. This is a crucial nuclear baseline role providing expert environmental advice and support to meet regulatory and operational requirements for nuclear plant safety cases at NNL’s own facilities and at customer facilities. Working closely with team management, other Discipline Technical Leads and team members, the role will require interaction with a range of internal and external customers.    

The successful candidate should have a minimum of a Masters qualification (MSc) in radiochemistry or environmental science and ideally will have a proven ability and track-record of working in controlled radioactive environments.   

Key day-to-day tasks will include:

  • Production of HAZANs, BATs, PMPs, Operational Safety Memoranda and facilitation of optioneering studies. 
  • Development of safety documentation, including Environmental Safety Cases (ESM’s), for Long Term Periodic Reviews 
  • Reviewing safety documentation and providing SQEP environmental support to e.g. PMPs, Short term Reviews, HAZOPs, MDDRs, hazard reviews etc. 
  • Leading the delivery of environmental assessments for plant safety cases from inception through all levels of project, technical and safety committee review; providing authoritative advice throughout. 
  • Carrying out and reporting environmental audits/inspections of NNL laboratory buildings.
  • Environmental monitoring and surveying.
  • Providing input to the Design and implementation of experimental laboratory programmes.
  • Maintaining knowledge of waste characterisation and disposal methodologies and techniques.
  • Design, implementation and completion of sampling programmes from VLLW to ILW levels 
  • Characterisation, disposal and reporting of radioactive samples throughout the lifecycle of the samples.
  • Assessment, analysis and reporting of technical information relating to radioactive waste, environmental protection and discharges from nuclear sites.

It is expected that the successful candidate will be one of several team members in the area of Environmental Science. In addition to the provision of specialist environmental support to NNL plants and facilities, the role will involve working closely with leading experts within NNL to contribute to a wide range of key waste management and environmental programmes both in the UK and internationally. The role is both desk and site-based and it is anticipated that, while the primary focus will be in the environmental safety assessment area, there will be opportunity to support work and research activities in other areas including waste and site characterisation, decontamination, remediation, waste treatment and new-build reactor design. Currently, Sellafield Ltd is the primary external customer for the team, however there are several areas which are currently expanding including Westinghouse, EDF, Magnox and MoD for waste management and contaminated land, and DESNZ/UK Government for Advanced Fuels, the UK AMR (Advanced Modular Reactor) programme and nuclear forensics.  

Although the candidate will primarily interact with members of the Waste & Environmental Technologies capability area and its customers, there will be interactions with other internal teams and technical leads such as Measurement and Analysis, Decision Science, Site Inspections, etc.  It is also expected that the candidate will have a wider interest and understanding of the nuclear industry as a whole (e.g. advanced fuels and new reactor technology). As such, there will be the opportunity to work on internally-funded R&D projects, author journal publications, peer review external reports and contribute towards knowledge exchange activities within the wider nuclear industry. 

The location for this role is flexible and can be based at Preston, Risley, Workington or Sellafield.

Role Responsibility

Main Responsibilities for Senior Environmental Safety Assessor:

  • Undertake duties as directed by the Capability Manager, Technical Lead and / or Lead Technologist.
  • Interface with Customers to develop project work and maintain relationships. 
  • Contribute as appropriate to environmental safety assessment and support activities, providing authoritative advice and attending appropriate forums as required, such as HAZOPs and MSCs.
  • Carry out environmental audits / inspections of NNL laboratory buildings.
  • Undertake training and mentoring of junior staff for succession planning and capability development. 
  • Contribute to waste characterisation proposals and programmes.
  • Carry out analysis of results, interpretation and produce, deliver and present on technical reports.
  • Prepare safety case paperwork and documentation and liaise with relevant stakeholders to ensure the safe delivery of work.
  • Understanding and maintaining a working knowledge of NNL plants, processes and environmental discharges.
  • Develop and maintain own knowledge of the industry and current Government environmental legislation and industry best practice.
  • Maintain up to date knowledge of current site documentation e.g. environmental permits, CEARs, SSIs, SLPs etc.

The Ideal Candidate

Essential Criteria for Senior Environmental Safety Assessor:

  • Minimum graduate qualification (MSc) in relevant scientific subject, e.g. radiochemistry and/or environmental science.
  • Classified worker with previous operational experience in a controlled radioactive environment, producing environmental safety case and hazard assessment documentation.
  • Proven ability to analyse data and act upon findings.
  • Proven ability to present technical information to others in the technical community, customers and academia where necessary. 
  • Good problem solving, analytical thinking and decision-making skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a team environment.
  • Strong computer skills including proficiency in MS Office. 
  • Proven ability to communicate effectively. 
  • Full clean driver’s licence and willing to travel.
  • Ability to obtain SC level security clearance (this includes but is not limited to identity, employment, financial and criminal record checks plus 5 years’ worth of UK residency).

Desirable Criteria for Senior Environmental Safety Assessor:

  • Lab experience and / or familiarity with analytical techniques for radiological sample analysis. 
  • Member of a professional institute (e.g. RSC).

About the Company

NNL is an incredible place to work A place where people do things that have never been done before A place where people push boundaries to further themselves, the business, and society as a whole.

This is a place where personal and professional opportunities are limitless. If you want to change the world, if you want to tackle climate change, if you want to help advance medical science, if you want to help put things in space, if you want to answer the big questions, if you want to work with extraordinary materials, if you want to meet great people, learn new skills, challenge yourself, work flexibly, and build a long successful career with the power to make a real impact… you can do it all here.

NNL has a vision for Equality, Diversity, and Inclusivity (ED&I) where NNL aims to be an inclusive workplace that attracts diverse talent through transparent and equal policies and procedures. We want you and the diverse mix of people that we employ, customers that we service, and stakeholders that we influence to feel valued. We encourage a workplace culture where everyone can thrive with a sense of belonging.

Recruitment Agency Notice


We operate a strict Preferred Supplier List (PSL) for the provision of recruitment services. Only agencies on our PSL may provide CVs and only when the role is released to them by our recruitment team. We will not accept unsolicited CVs from suppliers not currently on our PSL. We explicitly reserve the right to add candidate details from unsolicited CVs from non-PSL agencies into our own candidate database and to pursue/hire such candidate(s) without any obligation, financial or otherwise, to the agency concerned.

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