DEQ (Natural resource spec. LCA specialist) closes 10/10/2016

Natural Resource Specialist 4 (Life Cycle Analysis Specialist)

Salary $56,088.00 - $81,996.00 Annually$4,674.00 - $6,833.00 Monthly $56,088.00 - $81,996.00 Annually

Location Portland, ORPortland, OR

Job TypePermanent

Department Environmental Quality - Environmental Solutions Division

Job Number DEQ16-0084

Closing 10/10/2016 11:59 PM Pacific


This position is currently located in Downtown Portland. In November 2016 DEQ Headquarters will be moving to 700 NE Multnomah Street (also known as the Lloyd 700 building).

DEQ's mission is to be a leader in restoring, maintaining and enhancing the quality of Oregon's air, land and water. As a regulatory agency whose job is to protect the quality of Oregon's environment, DEQ works with Oregonians for a healthy, sustainable environment.
The Environmental Solutions Division is responsible for collecting environmental information, analyzing environmental information and developing sound and effective environmental strategies. The Division ensures that the technical and scientific expertise is available to inform and carry out these responsibilities. In partnership with others, the Division takes a comprehensive and holistic view of environmental impacts and seeks to create solutions that enable actions that can reduce those impacts.
The Materials Management section plans and implements policies and programs to reduce impacts of materials and products throughout their full life cycle, from design and production through distribution, consumption and use and management at end-of-life.  The section establishes goals and measures; supports and performs research; develops and implements incentive, product stewardship, waste reduction, and waste management programs; provides education and information; and collaborates with diverse public and private partners.

DEQ's Materials Management section has an opening for one (1) Natural Resource Specialist 4.  The purpose of this position is to design, oversee and conduct life cycle analyses (LCAs) of the environmental and public health impacts of materials and products.  This position will also disseminate LCA information to foster reduction of material-related impacts; manage projects that implement actions to reduce impacts; serve as a statewide expert on life cycle analyses and increase both internal and external capacity to perform and use LCAs.

Effective December 1, 2016 the listed salary will increase by 2.75%  

The pool of qualified applicants established from this announcement may be used to fill future vacancies, both limited duration and permanent, and for other DEQ office locations.

Duties & Responsibilities

Duties of this position include but are not limited to:

Program Operations

  • Determines life cycle analyses needed to evaluate environmental and public health impacts of material consumption.  Designs and conducts life cycle analyses to identify and reduce those impacts with focus on high impact materials.

  • Determines appropriate methods, models and other tools to conduct life cycle analyses and adapts those for project needs.  Designs, oversees and conducts data collection, calculations and analyses to determine and evaluate findings from life cycle analyses. Conducts and oversees ongoing data updates.

  • Determines research needed to update methods, models and other tools and data to analyses and evaluate life cycle impacts of materials.  Plans, designs, develops and directs research.

  • Negotiates and collaborates with other federal and state agencies, local and regional governments, and other public and private entities to implement research projects.

  • Independently interprets and evaluates data and results of research; identifies alternatives for applying them to projects and selects best alternative.

  • Tracks external life cycle research activities in areas relevant to DEQ's Materials Management.

  • Critiques internal and external reports for soundness of data collection, use, analysis and interpretation and compatibility with existing and proposed life cycle analyses.  Organizes, evaluates, summarizes and draws conclusions for use in projects.  

  • Writes reports and memoranda on research describing findings, conclusions and potential impacts and effectively recommends follow-up.  Explains and defends research and reporting in a variety of settings.

  • Develops and disseminates information on life cycle impacts of materials and products in a variety of forms to wide ranging audiences to foster reduction of those impacts.  E.g., eco-labels, standardized environmental footprint information, comprehensive hazard information for chemicals; end-of-life instructions for product categories.  

  • Evaluates and recommends policy, operational and rule changes to improve program; drafts rules and recommends legislative concepts for program needs.  Presents proposed policy and rule changes and legislative concepts to all levels internally and externally. 

  • Evaluates and coordinates the interrelationship of projects with other state, federal and local agencies and other organizations.

  • Participate/Lead capacity building activities for LCA across state agencies  

Technical Assistance

  • Consults with other state, federal and local government agencies, businesses, industry, interest groups and trade associations concerning studies, issues and problems related to life cycle analyses.  Partners with these entities on joint strategy development and projects.

  • As a statewide and agency expert, provides expert technical assistance and responds to complex technical issues and questions from scientists, business, industry, and local and state governments on sustainable materials management.

  • As an agency technical expert, consults at all levels internally and externally on life cycle analyses.  Provides expert technical assistance and guidance to the materials management program and other agency staff on technically complex issues. 

  • As an agency technical expert, serves on task forces and committees on issues related to life cycle analyses.

  • Advises section manager, program managers, division administrator agency director, agency commissioners, legislators, advisory committees and the public on effect of existing or proposed laws, regulations, policies and projects. 

  • Drafts interpretive memos, guidance memoranda, and implementation strategies for agency staff and the regulated community.  Ensures that appropriate staff are kept informed of current developments in life cycle analyses that affect their methods and work.

Project Management

  • Plans, leads and implements major projects and new program activities related to life cycle analyses. Develops project strategy, goals, objectives, and procedures.  

  • Manages major projects.  Determines responsibility for project elements, including responsibilities of other agencies or organizations partnering on projects.  Delegates elements of projects to other staff.  Develops and monitors project plans and budgets, including funds from sources in and outside the agency.  Monitors to ensure project team members follow through with designated responsibilities. 

  • Hires and directs work of consultants and contractors; administers contracts.  Develops plans, scopes of work, budgets, and schedules and assigns work.  Reviews work, in progress and completed, for compliance with contract and state and federal laws, regulations, policy and procedures.  Trains, directs and evaluates adequacy of work of other technical assistants.

  • Convenes and leads advisory groups and task forces comprised of agency staff and outside stakeholders to support projects.  Serve as liaison to resolve issues with internal and external parties.

Agency Representation

  • Represents the agency at informational meetings, educational presentations, public hearings, local or state agency commission and other meetings locally, regionally, and nationally. 

  • Develops, plans, organizes, coordinates and leads intra-and interagency efforts on collaborative projects.  


Work is primarily in an office environment. Includes occasional travel in- and out-of-state for meetings, conferences, workshops and training; occasional site visits to businesses involved with materials management such as manufacturing, processing and reuse/recycling facilities; and infrequent evening and weekend meetings. 

Qualifications, Required & Requested Skills

Minimum Qualifications - To be considered a qualified applicant you must meet the following criteria:
Four (4) years of experience in a natural resource program. At least one year of your natural resource or environmental experience must be at a technical or professional level performing activities in a natural resource program such as: researching and analyzing data; conducting investigations; applying pertinent laws and regulations; or coordinating and monitoring project activities;


A Bachelor's degree in Environmental Science, or a closely related field (e.g. Natural Resource Science, Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Physiology, Biology, Environmental Policy or Planning, Physical Science, Economics, Mathematics, Statistics, Psychology, Physics)                   

A Master's degree in Environmental Science, or a closely related field (e.g., Natural Resource Science, Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Physiology, Biology, Environmental Policy or Planning, Physical Science, Economics, Mathematics, Statistics, Psychology, Physics), will substitute for up to one year of the required experience.

A Doctorate degree in Environmental Science, or a closely related field (e.g., Natural Resource Science, Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Physiology, Biology, Environmental Policy or Planning, Physical Science, Economics, Mathematics, Statistics, Psychology, Physics) will substitute for up to two years of the required experience.

Note: A copy of all transcripts (if education is required to qualify) must be attached at the time of application in order to receive credit for college degrees or coursework. Transcripts must include coursework and indicate that a degree was conferred. Online transcripts are acceptable. Official or original transcripts are not required; however, they may be required to validate education.

Applicants that do not immediately meet the Minimum Qualifications for the NRS3, but can meet the Minimum Qualifications listed above within 12 months of being hired may be considered for this recruitment

Requested Skills - Preference may be given to applicants who can demonstrate knowledge, skill or experience in the following areas:

  • Creativity/innovation

  • Research, data development and statistics

  • Critical thinking, analysis, problem solving

  • Logic/reasoning/judgment

  • Adaptability/flexibility/resilience

  • Advanced MS Excel and MS Access

  • LCA software

  • Data management

  • Project management skills

  • Ability to work well with others one on one, in teams, over the phone, in person with strong interpersonal skills

  • Conflict resolution

  • Data visualization

  • Familiar with ISO LCA standards

  • Staying current with LCA research and standards development

  • Peer review

  • Teaching LCA to others

  • Excellent written and verbal communications

  • Knowledge of life cycle impacts of materials and products

  • Ability to envision alternative futures for production, consumption, reuse and recovery of materials and identify reasonable strategies leading to these

Additional Information

Application Screening: In order to evaluate your experience as it relates to this position, we need detailed responses to the supplemental questions. Please respond completely in the space provided. Responses to the supplemental questions will be considered when determining which applicants, among those who meet the minimum qualifications, will be invited to interview. Failure to respond to each question in the space provided for that question may result in disqualification of your application.

Your application and application materials must be consistent and thorough in order to be considered. If the information contained in your answers to each of the supplemental questions is not reflected in your work history, your application may be removed from consideration. A cover letter and/or resume will not be accepted as a substitute for the work history section or answers to the supplemental questions.

Please note that your responses may also be evaluated for grammar, spelling and punctuation.

To apply for this position, follow the "Apply" link above to complete the Oregon Employment Application online. All application materials must be received by the closing date/time posted.

Only complete applications will be considered. Be sure to answer all supplemental questions and attach any required documents.

Information in your application, as well as responses to the supplemental questions, will be reviewed to determine candidates who qualify and whose experience best matches the requested skills.

To receive credit for higher education coursework, transcripts (official or unofficial) must be submitted at the time of application. Note: To protect your confidential information, please redact (black out) your social security number on all transcripts before attaching to your application.

Salary: The Department of Environmental Quality's practice is to begin employees at the first pay step. However, a higher starting pay rate may be considered, budget permitting, depending upon the applicant's work history and current total compensation (salary/benefits/retirement).

Union: This position is represented by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), Local 3336.

The State of Oregon requires all applicants provide an email address. If you do not currently have an e-mail address, please refer to our applicant Frequently Asked Questions page for more info. The State of Oregon does not endorse any particular provider. For your convenience, here is a link to the page.

The Department of Environmental Quality is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. DEQ welcomes applications from women, veterans, people of color, and individuals with disabilities.

If you have a disability or otherwise require assistance, you may contact us at:

Department of Environmental Quality
Human Resources Office
811 SW Sixth Ave
Portland OR 97204
(503) 229-5382

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