What's it like to be an Environmental Health Officer?
Environmental Health Officers develop, enforce and evaluate regulations related to public health. They help protect against the spread of disease and pollution, and enforce legislations that ensure organisations meet standards with regard to the quality of air, food and water. Advanced knowledge of environmental health and the ability to enforce legislation are key to the role of an Environmental Health Officer. They work for government departments and local councils, and companies in the environmental science industry.
Tasks and duties
- Developing and implementing environmental health management plans.
- Evaluating and enforcing environmental health policies, legislation, programs and strategies.
- Inspecting and auditing workplaces, processes, manufacturing plants, public buildings and houses for legislative compliance.
- Investigating and managing public health incidents including disease outbreaks.
- Preparing and implementing plans for the safe and economic disposal of commercial, industrial and residential waste.
- Working to minimise pollution of the environment and improve environmental health.
- Identifying hazards and assessing and controlling risks in the workplace.
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How to become an Environmental Health Officer
- Complete a science degree, majoring in environmental health, environmental science or a related field. This is usually a three-year course of full-time study. Prerequisites include completion of Australian Year 12 (or equivalent), with required units or assumed knowledge in English, mathematics, biology, chemistry and physics.
- Consider completing a Graduate Diploma in Environmental Health or a Master of Environmental Health, although this is not essential to become an Environmental Health Officer.
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