Policy Adviser (EU and Environment)

Job Category

Job Experience

Job Location

Expiration Date

19 Oct 2018
  1. Salary: £33,000-£39,000 (currently ~€37,000 - €44,000) full-time basic salary p.a. (depending on experience), plus a bonus of up to 25% of salary (financial year 2019-20). We also offer a comprehensive and competitive benefits package – more information available on application or request.
  2. Contract: 12 months (extendable)
  3. Location: Water UK, St. James, London, United Kingdom. SW1H 0BH.
  4. Closing date: Friday 19 October 2018.
  5. Interviews: Week commencing Monday 29 October 2018
 
INTRODUCTION
 
The UK water sector is passionate about the environment. Between 1990 and 2020 it will invest around £25 billion (~€28 billion) into environmental work, with over 15,000km of rivers improved or protected. A further £5 billion of environmental investment will be made between 2020-25.
 
As the country’s water trade association, Water UK tries to ensure that the right policies are in place to derive as much environmental benefit as possible from that investment, and that on behalf of individual companies we deliver national projects to support local improvements.
 
We are also thinking about the environmental risks and opportunities that result from leaving the European Union – and how we can create a brand-new domestic framework for future environmental policy. That means we are considering questions like:
 
  • Building on ideas like ‘polluter pays’, what are the future environmental principles that should guide Government and industry priorities and decision making?
  • How can we redouble current efforts on the environment while also considering new challenges like the presence in rivers of plastics or pharmaceuticals?
  • What is our post-Brexit strategy for working with European institutions and other Member States on environmental legislation that may continue to influence UK rules?
 
To help this work, we are looking for an exceptional, early-career individual to play a central role across a demanding range of EU and environment issues.
 
We offer a renewable twelve-month contract and support for developing knowledge, skills and contacts in a broad and fast-moving policy role, with senior-level exposure to regulators, FTSE-100 companies, Government and EU bodies.
 
THE ROLE
 
The successful individual will work across a range of projects depending on business need, but is expected to hold responsibilities across three areas with some combination of the following tasks:
 
1. EU Negotiations:
 
  1. Help develop our post-Brexit strategy for analysing and contributing to future Commission proposals, and influencing their direction.
  2. Support the UK water industry’s work on the Urban Wastewater Treatment Directive – a critical piece of legislation for protecting rivers, aquatic life, and the wider natural  environment.
  3. Support (for example, by commissioning analytical work, developing briefs, or coordinating responses) work on other EU initiatives. This is likely to include the Water Framework Directive, micropollutants, ‘extended producer responsibility’ and plastics.
  4. Further develop how Water UK manages internally its EU business (covering around half a dozen Directives and initiatives at any one time)
 
2. Environment Strategy:
 
  • Support work to reduce the amount of water taken from the environment. This is likely to include leadership of (or support for) individual pieces of analysis, contributing to the development of a long-term water resource strategy, liaison with stakeholders, and work on individual policy areas (for example, to encourage resource-efficient behaviour)
  • Support work to deliver the UK Government’s innovative 25-year Environment Plan, with ownership of individual outcomes
  • Support work to develop the UK’s post-EU institutions and legislation (for example, to hold Government to account for maintaining high environmental standards)
  • Strengthen collaboration and joint working with environmental NGOs
 
3. Environment Policy and Projects:
 
  1. Lead or support specific projects on domestic environment policy (especially future agriculture policy, future environmental land management schemes, and microplastics)
  2. Oversee day-to-day work on the ‘Refill’ project to remove 35 million new plastic bottles from England through tens of thousands of free water refill points in every town and city in  England, saving carbon and saving single-use plastics (see https://www.refill.org.uk/).
  3. Facilitate links, sharing and co-working with other areas of Water UK’s work as appropriate (for example, on drinking water or drought response), and produce briefs in support of senior engagement.
 
THE PERSON
 
The right person has probably graduated within the last few years, with either a Masters qualification or equivalent work experience, and has an interest in both European and
environmental questions. They must have:
 
  • vision and intellect to develop compelling and insightful strategy;
  • creativity and analytical grip to develop innovative, evidenced and deliverable policy;
  • a natural ability to communicate with clarity, fluency and impact
  • initiative and drive to learn quickly, juggle tasks with limited oversight, and deliver small projects
 
You will need to be comfortable working in a small team. That means a willingness to take responsibility, deal directly with senior staff, and a comfort with a lack of easy or ‘off the shelf’ answers. You will require enthusiasm, flexibility and initiative, and the ability to work well with others. A sense of humour will help!
 
Knowledge of relevant subjects (the theory and practice of European law-making; the UK Parliament or Government; water quality or environment policy issues; basic project management and MS Office) would all be strong advantages. But most of all we expect an ability to learn very quickly.
 
WORKING AT WATER UK
 
Water UK represents all water and wastewater service providers in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Our vision is of a water sector that provides customers and communities with world-class services, improves the environment, and enhances the UK's quality of life.
 
We are headquartered next to St James’s Park in London, and work closely with regulators, Government, Parliamentarians, civil society and experts of all kinds.
 
Candidates must have the right to work in the UK. For a candidate currently living abroad, we can offer informal advice about living in and enjoying London, but no relocation allowance is available. Candidates are advised to look at UK levels of salary taxation, which tend to be different to (often lower than) Brussels and some other countries. Salaries are paid in Sterling to a UK bank account.
 
HOW TO APPLY
 
You should apply by email to Water UK’s Operations Manager, Yvonne Rawley, at:
yrawley@water.org.uk by Friday 19 October.
 
Your application should include:
 
  • An up-to-date CV
  • A covering letter of no more than two sides of A4 that sets out:
  1. why your interests and experience would be a good fit for the role;
  2. your reason for applying;
  3. how you have shown an aptitude for communication, solving problems, and delivering at pace, and;
  4. the point from which you would be available to start.
  • Your response, in no more than 500 words, to this question:
“Imagine you are at a meeting of senior representatives of the UK water industry. Thinking about the forward programme of work, they ask you to suggest an objective way of identifying the most important environmental issues facing the sector - and the considerations they should bear in mind, or weigh up, as they develop a response. How do you respond?”

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