Job Posting #22905

Senior Environmental Planner (Ecologist)

Closing Date:Thu., Aug. 08, 2019
Department:Planning and Development Svcs
Location:Headquarters Campbell West
Type:Regular Full-Time
Union:Non Union
Salary:$82,920 - $97,550
Work Hours:35 hrs / week

About Niagara Region

Serving a diverse urban and rural population of more than 430,000, Niagara Region is focused on building a strong and prosperous Niagara. Working collaboratively with 12 local area municipalities and numerous community partners, the Region delivers a range of high quality programs and services to support and advance the well-being of individuals, families and communities within its boundaries. Nestled between the great lakes of Erie and Ontario, the Niagara peninsula features some of Canada's most fertile agricultural land, the majesty of Niagara Falls and communities that are rich in both history and recreational and cultural opportunities. Niagara boasts dynamic modern cities, Canada's most developed wine industry, a temperate climate, extraordinary theatre, and some of Ontario's most breathtaking countryside. An international destination with easy access to its binational U.S. neighbour New York State, Niagara attracts over 14 million visitors annually, as well as a steady stream of new residents and businesses.


Reporting to the Manager Environmental Planning, the Senior Environmental Planner is responsible for providing leadership and critical thinking in applying Niagara Region and Provincial land use planning policies related to the natural environment to the planning and permit development review service.

This role will be involved in the pre-consultation and development application review processes with municipalities and developers reviewing, researching, analyzing, resolving conflict and preparing coordinated comments and reports on a wide range of more complex and politically sensitive development applications, projects and proposals in both urban and rural contexts. 


  • Degree in Planning, Environmental or Botanical Science, Biology, Ecology, or a related field, or a related undergraduate degree/diploma and post-graduate degree or diploma.
  • An equivalent combination of education, experience and/or qualifications may be considered.
  • Master’s degree in, Environmental or Botanical Science, Biology or Ecology is preferred.


  • A minimum of 7 years of progressively responsible, relevant experience, including conducting and/or peer reviewing Environmental Impact Studies, experience in the planning and development review of land use applications related to the natural environment.
  • Experience with specialized planning studies such as, but not limited to, Environmental Impact Studies, sub-watershed studies, hydrogeological studies, stormwater management reports, and other environmental and natural heritage studies (e.g. watercourse, woodlands, natural hazards, habitat, Species-at-Risk, etc.).
  • Demonstrated knowledge of ecological systems and processes as they relate to land use approvals.
  • Superior knowledge of survey protocols and technical guidelines as they relate to a wide range of biological field investigations.
  • Working knowledge of the Planning Act, Environmental Protection Act, Endangered Species Act, and associated regulations, relevant Provincial policies, plans and guidelines, and the Regional Official Plan.
  • 10 years of progressively responsible, relevant experience is preferred.
  • Municipal planning experience is preferred.
  • Knowledge of project management norms and practices is preferred.
  • Proficient with GIS based mapping systems (e.g., ArcView) is preferred.
  • Membership or eligibility in the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) in good standing.
  • Eligibility to become a Registered Professional Planner (RPP).
  • Full membership in the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) in good standing is preferred.
  • Registered Professional Planner (RPP) accreditation, in good standing is preferred.
  • Trained in Ecological Land Classification for Southern Ontario and the Ontario Wetland Evaluation System is preferred.
  • Other relevant certifications would be considered.


1. Responsible for reviewing complex and politically sensitive development applications including Planning Act applications, Environmental Assessments, secondary plans and infrastructure planning initiatives to determine compliance with current Provincial and Regional policy related to the natural environment and providing defendable comments and recommendations.
  • Makes recommendations from an ecological perspective related to the implementation of Regional and Provincial Policies.
  • Prepares for and provides guidance and support to Development Planners in preparation for pre-consultation, to clearly identify and discuss Provincial and Regional issues and required technical studies related to the natural environment early in the process.  On occasion, attends pre-consultation with developers and partners,
  • Scopes and conducts peer reviews of Environmental Impact Studies (EIS).
  • Visits prospective development sites to evaluate potential environmental issues, identify EIS scoping requirements and/or verify EIS findings and recommendations.
  • Initiates discussions on issues at earliest opportunity to determine remediation/resolution.
  • Offers alternative solutions and advice to customers balancing the needs of multiple stakeholders with legislative requirement and policies.
  • Coordinates and provides comments and defendable input into Development Planning’s response letters to municipalities, summarizing analyses, recommendations and conditions of approval.
  • Prepares and presents reports to Committee and Council for approval and implementation, resulting in an independent professional opinion report document.
  • Prepares and gives evidence at Local Planning Appeals Tribunal or Environmental Tribunal hearings and other types of quasi-judicial hearings.  Attends review meetings with Region’s legal counsel to provide background information on litigations, attending pre-hearings and other legal hearings, resulting from planning studies and applications as required.  Provides advice to legal counsel during hearing.
  • Participates in internal and external teams with respect to special planning studies (new legislation, development policy, community improvement plans, secondary and master plans, etc.), integrating regional and provincial matters.
  • Provides functional guidance to staff and contractors, providing work direction, assigning tasks/projects, determining methods and procedures to be used, resolving problems, and ensuring results are achieved.

2. Contributes to and coordinates projects related to preparing environmental development standards and guidelines, developing project plans and conducting research.
  • Undertakes specialized research on environmental planning issues from problem identification to implementation planning.
  • Generates information to be made available to the general public through the Region’s website and various other media.
  • Ensures data captured and generated by the appropriate tracking system is accurate.
  • Implements best practices with respect to integration of environmental planning and development review.

3. Educates, coaches and mentors team members on all aspects of environmental planning.
  • Contributes to the development of departmental goals, objectives and work programs.
  • Implements and measures departmental directions through team performance objectives and assignments.
  • Acts in the absence of the Manager, Environmental Planning, as directed.

4. Contributes to continuous improvement of processes and service delivery.
  • Remains current on new techniques, issues, and legislation affecting environmental planning, providing advice and recommendations on strategies.
  • Assists in the management of efficient and effective development review processes and performance reporting.
  • Prepares development guidelines and standards.

Special Requirements

  • Must maintain ability to travel in a timely manner to other offices, work locations or sites as authorized by the Corporation for business reasons.
  • Regional staff strive to enable the strategic priorities of council and the organization through the completion of their work. Staff carry out their work by demonstrating the corporate values of service, honesty, choice, partnership and respect.

Closing Statement

Uncover the wonder of the Niagara Region and join a team dedicated to meeting tomorrow's challenges TODAY!

Let us know why you would be an excellent team member by submitting your online application.

We thank all candidates for their interest however, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

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