The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California

Job Details

Job Summary


Metropolitan’s Environmental Planning Section has one (1) opening for an Associate Environmental Specialist available at its Headquarters in Los Angeles, California. 


As an Associate Environmental Specialist you will be responsible for an extensive scope of work including biological studies and monitoring for Operations & Maintenance (O&M) activities and Capital Investment Project (CIP) projects throughout Metropolitan’s service area including projects and maintenance activities on the Colorado River Aqueduct and related desert facilities; and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) relicensing efforts for the State Water Project. This will include field visits, reviewing construction drawings, conducting biological surveys, wetland delineations, construction monitoring, permit preparation, resource agency negotiations and compliance, and provides recommendations for use in developing mitigation strategies.

Your primary responsibilities will be preparing and reviewing biological impact assessments and technical reports in support of environmental documents; conducting environmental inspections, wildlife and vegetation baseline studies, and nesting bird surveys; preparing permit applications for the Clean Water Act, California Department of Fish and Wildlife 1600 Streambed Alteration Agreements, and state and federal endangered species acts; and recommending appropriate environmental avoidance, environmental minimization measures, and feasible mitigation to ensure compliance with state, federal, local, and Metropolitan specific regulations.

Additionally, as an Associate Environmental Specialist within this role, you will have the opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), Fish and Game Code, and Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

This position will require periodic travel and overnight stays at Metropolitan facilities, primarily in the Desert region, for up to three weeks at a time, approximately two to three times per year.


1. Plans, coordinates, and conducts environmental studies and projects, including monitoring quality, budget, schedule, and compliance with environmental specifications, rules, regulations, and laws.

2. Researches, analyzes, and prepares documentation for compliance with environmental guidelines and project improvements that minimize environmental impacts.

3. Prepares and disseminates information regarding pertinent regulatory and legislative issues.

4. Prepares technical reports and may conduct presentations.

5. Interfaces with regulatory agencies at Metropolitan facilities to coordinate environmental projects and address issues.

6. Reviews consultants’ work, prepares and processes work orders, and may participate in the selection process and administration of professional services agreements.

7. Coordinates internal review of documents from external entities and compiles comments.

8. Prepares checklists, protocols, procedures, and manuals.

9. May participate on a project team.


1. Makes recommendations to higher level staff and management to provide environmental clearances for projects and activities.

2. Prepares and analyzes environmental planning documents per the California Environmental Quality Act, including exemptions, negative declarations, and assists with the preparation of environmental impact reports.

3. Develops and oversees implementation of mitigation monitoring plans for projects and designated activities.

4. Conducts or oversees studies to determine need for permits, obtains necessary environmental regulatory permits and ensures compliance.

5. Coordinates with Board letter authors on California Environmental Quality Act related matters; may provide California Environmental Quality Act statements.

6. Prepares environmental specifications and may monitor construction projects.

7. Conducts environmental awareness training.

8. May assist in the implementation and management of habitat conservation programs.

Work Schedule: 9/80, Mon – Friday with Alternate Fridays Off

Job Selection Criteria
• 10% Interpersonal Effectiveness
• 15% Oral Communication
• 15% Written/Technical Communication
• 20% Project Planning & Coordination
• 40% Technical /Analytical Knowledge and Experience


Job Requirements

Education and Experience: Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in a related field and four years of relevant experience;
two years in an MWD Assistant Environmental Specialist II classification; or Master’s degree from an accredited college or university in a related field and two years of relevant experience.

Related Field is defined as:
an area within Natural Resources, Biology, or Natural Sciences or Environmental Studies.
Relevant Experience is defined as: working experience performing surveys to identify plants, fish, wildlife species, and wildlife habitats in project areas.

General Required Knowledge of: Theories and practices of environmental science, methods, and techniques used to conduct environmental analyses and investigations; principles and practices of technical research, analyses, and report preparation; applicable federal, state and local laws, codes, and regulations; and current office technology and equipment.

Environmental Planning Required Knowledge of: Principles, concepts and techniques of environmental planning at the state, regional, and local government level.

General Required Skills and Abilities to:
Make presentations; negotiation skills; analytical skills; use spreadsheets, databases, presentation applications and project management tools; use independent judgment and exercise discretion; problem solve; prioritize and multi-task; communicate clearly and concisely, both verbally and in writing; establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work; work independently and in a team environment; and operate current office equipment including computers and supporting applications.

License: Valid California Class C Driver License that allows you to drive in the course of your employment is required at time of application.


The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met or may be encountered by an employee to successfully perform the job duties of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the job duties.

Physical Demands: The work is primarily sedentary. Typically, the employee may sit comfortably to do the work. However, some of the time will involve some physical exertion such as long periods of standing; walking over rough, uneven, or rocky surfaces; bending; carrying of light items such as paper, books, or small parts; driving an automobile, etc. No special physical demands are required to perform the work.

Work Environment: The work environment is primarily in an office setting involving everyday risks or discomforts that require normal safety precautions typical of such places as offices, meeting and training rooms, libraries, and residences or commercial vehicles, e.g., use of safe work practices with office equipment, avoidance of trips and falls, observance of fire regulations and traffic signals, etc. The work area is adequately lighted, heated, and ventilated. However, some of the time may be outdoors that may involve moderate risks or discomforts. Employees may be required to use protective clothing or gear such as coats, boots, sunglasses and gloves.

Vision Requirements: No special vision requirements. 


• Competitive compensation
• Excellent medical, dental, life, vision and retirement plans, including pension plan and 401k (with matching contribution), tuition reimbursement, and more
• Training and advancement opportunities
• On-site fitness center
• Excellent working environment
• Hub of public transportation: rail, subway, buses, and taxis
• Public transportation reimbursements and van pools

For more information on MWD benefits, please use the following link:

This job announcement has been designed to indicate the general nature and level of work being performed by employees in this classification. It is not designed to contain or be interpreted as a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities and qualifications required of employees assigned to this job. To receive a copy of the complete job description, please send an email to

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities. Qualified individuals with disabilities, who need a reasonable accommodation during the application or selection process, please call (213) 217-7738 or email

MWD is a Federal and State EO employer – Veterans/Disabled and other protected categories

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