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Environmental health practitioner Green Job

Environmental health practitioners make sure people's surroundings are safe, healthy and hygienic.

Annual Salary

£27,000 to £40,000

Average UK salary in 2022 was £33,200
(source Office for National Statistics)

Working hours

35 to 40 a week

You could work: evenings / weekends; on a rota

Future employment

There will be 2.4% more Environmental health practitioner jobs in 2027.

Day to day tasks

In your day-to-day duties you may:

  • inspect businesses for health and safety, food hygiene and food standards
  • investigate outbreaks of food poisoning and infectious disease
  • collect samples for laboratory testing
  • inspect houses to make sure they're safe for people to live in
  • enforce environmental health laws and give evidence in court
  • investigate accidents at work
  • investigate noise and environmental nuisance complaints
  • provide advice to community groups or businesses and give educational talks to improve people’s health

Working environment

You may need to wear protective clothing.

You could work in an office, in the countryside or in a business.

Your working environment may be dirty and you'll travel often.

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role

You can study for a degree qualification approved by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

If you already have a degree in a related subject, you could get into environmental health careers through an accredited postgraduate course.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course
For more information

You can apply to do an Environmental Health Practitioner Level 6 Degree Apprenticeship.

This usually takes 4 years to complete, as a mix of on-the-job training and academic study at an approved university.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
For more information

You may be able to start as an environmental health technician and study for a part-time environmental health degree while you're working.

With qualifications and experience, you may then be able to work towards chartered practitioner status.

Requirements and restrictions

You'll need to:

  • You're likely to need a full, clean driving licence for this job.

More information

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health for professional development opportunities.

Further information

You can find more on how to become an environmental health practitioner from the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

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With experience you could work as an employee or consultant in:local authorities; government departments; retailers and hotel chains; regulators and enforcement agencies; the NHS; the armed services; university research; charities and international development organisations

You could progress to supervisory or management positions.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • active listening skills
  • analytical thinking skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to think clearly using logic and reasoning
  • legal knowledge including court procedures and government regulations
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • excellent written communication skills
  • maths knowledge
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
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