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National Recognition for Environment Professionals

9 March 2006

National Recognition for Environment Professionals

Seven people – including five from Canterbury - have become the first to gain a new qualification recognising their experience and high professional standards in environmental services.

The seven were officially named Certified Environmental Practitioner (CEnvP) by the Minister for the Environment, Mr David Benson-Pope, at a function in Christchurch today (March 9).

The president of the New Zealand Chapter of EIANZ, Judith Roper-Lindsay, said it is encouraging to see more environment professionals electing to seek accreditation.

“Environmental practitioners are essentially an unregulated group in which people make a living from their professional advice, and so it is very important that we are able to self regulate through a professional body that provides guidance and encourages good professional practice.”

“EIANZ was formed principally to encourage high standards of practice in all of the professional disciplines which have a bearing on environmental outcomes, including science, environmental management, regulatory services and so on.

“Accreditation is the key process by which people can be recognised for their expertise and good professional practice and it also provides the kind of recognition available to other professions, such as engineering, accounting, planning and architecture.

In making the presentations, Mr Benson-Pope noted the importance of the role of professionals in achieving good environmental outcomes. The Government was actively promoting the development of good practice, he said, through initiatives such as skill development for decision-makers working under the Resource Management Act. The role of environment professions was likely to increase as the Government adopted more of a whole-of-government approach to environment issues.

The group of newly certified practitioners includes: Pene Burns, senior environmental scientist, Sinclair Knight Merz; Bill Chisolm, resource consent, ecology and bio-security consultant; Rochelle Hardy, policy analyst, strategy and planning group, Christchurch City Council; Bob Penter, group manager of environmental services, GHD Ltd; Professor Ian Spellerberg, director of the Isaac Centre for Nature Conservation, Lincoln University; Rebecca Roper-Gee, currently based in Cambridge, England, working for the British Antarctic Survey; and Shaun Lewis, senior advisor, reporting and review group, Ministry for the Environment.

EIANZ will accept another intake for accreditation in May 2006. Details are available at www.cenvp.or

The Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand is an association of environmental practitioners established to facilitate interaction among environmental professionals; promote environmental knowledge and awareness; and advance ethical and competent environmental practice.


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