Water Industry Regulation Transformation Programme - Environment Agency

Water Industry Regulation Transformation Programme

Water Industry Regulation Transformation Programme

graphic image in green and white reading "your environment, your career"

We are changing the way we regulate the water industry, embedding a new approach that targets our resource and interventions to uncover non-compliance and drive better performance from the water industry.  This programme has been set up to enable the Environment Agency to secure clean and plentiful water through a focus on our regulation of water companies.

Our team’s central purpose is to continuously improve all aspects of water company regulation. Water companies are a vital part of the water cycle, taking water out to meet our personal and business needs and then cleaning and returning the water to our rivers, coasts and groundwater. Water companies don’t always perform to their best abilities, and this harms the environment we are protecting and enhancing. Our current work areas include topics such as incidents, storm overflow & flow compliance, enforcement, inspections and audits.

We will support this work by recruiting new people to join us.

Among the exciting new roles we are looking for across the country are:

Below is some more detailed information on the roles available.

Environment Officer 

As an Environment Officer, you will play a critical frontline role protecting the environment helping create a cleaner, safer and healthier environment for people and wildlife. You will be based in a new team working to protect and improve the water quality of our rivers, coasts and groundwater through effective and efficient regulation of water companies. The team will face an individual water company and work alongside a network of colleagues in national and local teams.  

As an Environment Officer, you will enter the role on a EOA grade £26,428 and follow a structured development programme to reach EOB grade £31,429. This is expected to take up to 18 months and is awarded after demonstrating the required capabilities. 

During this development period, you will be required to demonstrate the personal effectiveness skills essential to a regulatory role such as good communication and influencing skills.  

Together with these skills, you will be demonstrating and applying your understanding of the water industry.  

You will understand and apply the relevant legislation and the appropriate compliance interventions to take.  

As a regulator, you will be expected to take enforcement action where a business or individual fails to comply with the relevant legislation which on occasion can require giving evidence in court. 


Robin –  Environment Officer

I have been an Environment Officer (EO) for 5 years and work in a Land and Water team. Land and Water teams have varied EO roles that provide incident response to water quality pollution incidents, regulate the water companies ensuring compliance with permits, check that water is being taken from our watercourses (water abstraction) correctly and regulate the agricultural sector.  I specialise in regulating the agricultural sector and work in a virtual team working across the whole of the West Midlands. 

Robin –  Environment Officer
Robin –  Environment Officer

The thing I love most about the day job is the variety of work, one day I can be on a planned farm visit ensuring the pollution risks of the farm have been addressed and legislation is being complied with, the next day I could be investigating a sewage spill into a river and ensuring the environmental impact is limited and the site stops it’s pollution. Tracing pollutions can turn you into a detective and when you find the source and stop the pollution you have a huge sense of achievement.  Getting outside to see the effects we are having on our environment and being able to both advise and enforce on legislation makes this an interesting job. The mix of both planned and reactive work is exciting.

On a personal level, being a father with 2 young children and having a positive work life balance is very important to me. The Environment Agency provides great flexibility and really benefits my home life which allows me to be my best in work.

Team Leader

You will be leading a new team working to protect and improve the water quality of our rivers, coasts and groundwater through effective and efficient regulation of water companies. The team will face an individual water company and work alongside a network of colleagues in national and local teams.  

Your role will include; maintaining the health, safety and wellbeing of your team, supporting them to develop themselves and managing ways of working to ensure we can meet the needs of the future. You will need to balance the work within your team to ensure that they are focussed on the areas that will deliver the greatest environmental benefit. 

Environment Agency staff

Kirsty – Team Leader

Kirsty – Team Leader

When I joined the Environment Agency (EA) I joined as an Environment Officer tackling the causes of pollution and waste crime. Now 15 years later I’m a Team Leader and I feel I can deliver so much more for the environment by leading colleagues in my team.

The great thing about being a Team Leader in the EA is that you don’t need to have an environmental background to have a great positive impact on the environment, but you do need a drive and passion to support and develop the environmental experts in our teams to thrive. Although my academic background was in conservation, I have led Fisheries Biodiversity & Geomorphology Team, Customers & Engagement Team and now an Agricultural Regulation Team and each one has developed me as a Team Leader and challenged me in new ways. Each team has provided a huge sense of satisfaction and the knowledge that we as a team are a different part of the wider EA doing it’s part to protect the environment for people and wildlife.  The common theme throughout all my team leader roles is ensuring that my team’s health, safety and wellbeing are paramount.

Ask any member of the EA what the best thing about working for the organisation is and everyone will say – the people you work with. As a Team Leader you get to recruit and support people to develop in their careers and their personal skills.  Whilst also being supported in your development by the host of training courses on offer to Team Leaders both new and existing.

As Team Leader, you also get the opportunity to get out with your team and see the real difference they make and those that we regulate.  This is useful in helping you to understand what support people may need in their role but also getting out in the environment we are protecting.