How to Become an Environmental Auditor

How to Become an Environmental Auditor: Career Guide

If you want to become an environmental auditor, you first need to determine if this career is well suited for you. Are you committed to conserving and protecting the environment? Are you interested in a lucrative career that allows you to apply your extensive knowledge of environmental regulations to ensure companies reduce their impact on the environment?  If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to these questions, you may be well suited for a career as an environmental auditor!


Below we've outlined what you'll need to succeed in a career as an environmental auditor. We've also included helpful information for an environmental auditor career, such as job description, job duties, salary expectations, a list of possible employers and much more!



Education Needed to Become an Environmental Auditor

To become an environmental auditor, you typically need at least a bachelor’s degree in one of the following fields:


• Environmental Science

• Environmental Management

• Natural Resource Management

• Environmental Engineering

• Environmental Assessment


Some employers may require environmental auditor candidates to have a master’s degree in one of these fields in order to be considered for a position. A master’s degree can also help when trying to advance for senior level or management positions.


In a career as an environmental auditor, it is beneficial to have working knowledge of environmental management systems (such as ISO 14001), occupational health and safety systems, waste & wastewater legislation, statistics, and accounting procedures. This knowledge is either gained through coursework, or as a result of work experience in the field.


Tip for Success: Even if a master’s degree is not required, having one may help put you ahead of the competition when applying for a job, and may entitle you to higher pay.




Environmental Auditor Job Description

Environmental auditors are responsible for assessing the environmental performance of operations in business and industry. They must ensure corporate and government standards relating to environmental control are being met. The main objective of environmental auditors is to detect any existing or potential environmental compliance problems or management system deficiencies, and make recommendations as to their correction.


Environmental auditors can conduct two different types of audits: a compliance audit, which measures if a business is meeting internal and external environmental guidelines and legislation, and a management performance audit, which measures if a business is meeting the appropriate criteria for management systems.



Environmental Auditor Job Duties

• Review the overall operations of the business that’s being assessed

• Select and manage members of the audit team

• Gather data related to business operations, using such methods as on-site inspections, document reviews and staff interviews

• Examine clients' records for appropriate government permits and requirements, safety standards, maintenance and inventory control measures

• Review management systems, emergency preparedness and response procedures, employee training (for compliance with corporate and government standards), environmental monitoring programs and waste management efforts

• Prepare final audit reports, which includes results of audit and recommendations for improvement

• Present findings to the managers and directors of the business

• Assist the business in developing an environmental management plan

• Follow up with the business to ensure process improvements have been successfully implemented



Who Hires Environmental Auditors?

Environmental auditors may be employed by or work on a contract basis for such organizations as:


• Engineering and environmental consulting firms

• Federal, provincial/state and municipal government departments

• Utility companies

• Manufacturing firms

• Resource-based companies (agriculture, forestry, mining, oil and gas)





Work Experience Needed to Become an Environmental Auditor

You need to be certified in order to become an environmental auditor, and become a member of the Canadian Environmental Auditing Association. In order to become certified as an environmental auditor, you need to demonstrate that you have experience in the field.


There are several methods you can use to gain experience. Working as an intern during school, volunteering and working in an assistant position for an environmental auditing company are ways to gain the skills and experience needed. 



Skills Needed to Become an Environmental Auditor

In order to be an effective environmental auditor, you need to have a certain set of skills, including:


• Need to be able to adapt to keep up with the issue of the day

• Must be a self-managed learner in order to stay informed and continuously hone skills

• Must enjoy having clear rules and guidelines for their work

• Must be observant and pay close attention to details

• Must be able to critically analyze information and make logical decisions

• Must have excellent oral and written communication skills



Environmental Auditor Jobs

Our job board below has "Environmental Auditor" postings in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.

Environmental Auditor Salary

The salary of an environmental auditor can vary greatly depending on many factors, such as their level of experience and certification, their level of education, where they work, and many others.


Environmental Auditor Salary United States: According to O*NET OnLine, the average salary for environmental compliance inspectors (who perform the same duties as environmental auditors) is $60,740 per year.


Environmental Auditor Salary Alberta: According to the 2011 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans in the Inspectors in Public and Environmental Health and Occupational Health and Safety occupational group, which includes environmental auditors, earned on average from $31.30 to $41.28 an hour.



Careers Related to Environmental Auditor

Listed below are jobs that are similar in nature to that of an environmental auditor, as they may involve many of the same skills, competencies and responsibilities.


Environmental Consultant

Environmental Impact Assessment Specialist

Environmental Policy Officer

Environmental Scientist

ISO Auditor



References: Environmental Auditor Career

Please consult the references below to find more information on the various aspects of a career as an Environmental Auditor.


Alberta Learning and Information Services website:

ECO Canada website:

O*Net Online website:

State Government of Victoria website:



Scholarships for Becoming an Environmental Auditor

Scholarships listed for majors that apply to becoming an Environmental Auditor can be found on the following page:


• Environmental Engineering Scholarships

• Environmental Science Scholarships

• Urban Planning Scholarships


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any scholarships that you even barely qualify for, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants!



Becoming an Environmental Auditor: Applicable Majors

Studying one of the university majors listed below is an excellent starting point to becoming an environmental auditor. Click on the links to find out what else you can do with these majors!


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