Energy & Environmental Planner

BRPC is hiring an Energy and Environmental Planner, a full time and benefited position. Download the full job posting.

This section contains a summary of the main responsibilities and requirements for all Planner positions within BRPC.

Specific responsibilities and requirement for individual staff persons are described in PART III.

The main responsibilities of this position are:

1. Program / Project Responsibilities:
The Planner serves as a team member for multiple regional and energy and environmental planning and
implementation projects. Responsibilities include:
• Performs a wide range of functions within the area of specialization, including research, data collection,
assessment and evaluation and development of plans, reports and other material for publication;
• Leads and facilitates public participation in planning project and plan formulation and implementation;
• Reviews analyses of impacts in the area of expertise;
• Completes assigned tasks according to schedule and hour / budget allocations;
• Provides support to Project and Program Managers as necessary;
• Works with Senior Planners and Program Managers to identify possible new projects / programs.

2. Overall Agency Responsibilities:
• Provides support to ongoing outreach and other activities, such as the agency newsletter, trainings and
• Provides staff support to agency committees;
• Provides support to the organization and management of the agency’s material related to their area of
• Provides technical assistance and expertise to Berkshire region municipalities;
• Provides technical assistance and support to other agency initiatives and projects;
• Interacts at a staff level with state and federal agencies in areas of expertise, and in working on regional
and state coordinating groups;
• Develops grants and provides support material for grant development and project management;
• Provides staff and technical support for Clearinghouse reviews as requested.

The minimum qualifications for this position are:

Education or training:
Masters Degree in a relevant field from an accredited college or university is required. Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field and two years of relevant experience may be substituted for a master’s degree.

Special licenses, registration or certification:
• Driver’s license valid for use in the United States

Knowledge, skills, and abilities of this position:
The Planner should possess the following skills and abilities:
• Strong research and analytical skills, with specific ability to analyze complex technical issues and to formulate recommendations;
• Ability to complete multiple tasks on time and within budget;
• Excellent communication skills, especially the ability to write effectively, to work directly with local officials and boards, and provide clear explanations to other BRPC staff;
• Strong skills in being able to communicate and work effectively with a wide range of people and organizations in a collaborative fashion;
• Ability to conduct field work and to participate in public meetings in all parts of the region utilizing personal vehicle;
• Must have working proficiency in Microsoft Office programs.

This section contains a description of the main responsibilities and requirements for this specific Planner position that are in addition to those described in PART II.

1. Program / Project Responsibilities:
The Energy & Environmental Planner assists with project assignments related to communities, conservation organizations and local committees to create a more sustainable and resilient Berkshire region. Primary areas of focus are reducing energy use, increasing clean energy and energy efficiency, and identifying renewable energy opportunities, identifying climate change impacts and natural hazards, and protecting the natural environment. Identifying and securing funding to address these focus areas are key components of the Energy & Environmental

Planner’s work, including these current programs:
• Green Communities (administered by MA Dept. of Energy Resources);
• Affordable Access Regional Coordination (administered by MA Dept. of Energy Resources);
• Pre-disaster Natural Hazard Mitigation (administered by MA Emergency Management Agency);
• Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (administered by MA Energy and Environmental Affairs);
• Water Quality and Natural Habitat Protection Programs (administered by MA Departments of Environmental Protection and Dept. of Fish and Game); and National Pollution Discharge Elimination System Phase II (administered by U.S. EPA)

a. Assist Berkshire communities to implement clean energy projects. This includes aiding municipalities to plan for and implement energy reduction or renewable energy projects, and may including support for those communities seeking Massachusetts Green Community designation. Specific activities, defined by the community, may include but are not limited to:

• Assisting communities with Green Community designation application;
• Assisting Green Communities with procurement activities for approved grant-funded clean energy projects;
• Assisting Green Communities with Annual Report preparation;
• Assisting non-Green Communities with the procurement and management of clean energy projects.

b. Provide support to assist communities in understanding and planning for natural hazard/disaster and climate
change impacts, and implementing actions to become more resilient. Specific activities may include, but are not limited to:
• Supporting work with communities to achieve Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) designation.
including a community engagement process and development of Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness action plans;
• Supporting assistance to communities in applying for MVP grant funds and, where needed, aiding in the implementation of projects;
• Support working with communities to complete FEMA-approved Natural Hazard Mitigation Plans, and where needed, aiding with grant applications to implement projects; and c. Conduct planning activities under the Affordable Access Regional Coordination (AARC) Grant Program, which aims to bring affordable clean energy opportunities to middle- and low-income residents in Berkshire County.

Specific activities may include but are not limited to:
• Capacity building in the area of clean energy for the agency/region;
• Participating in training organized by DOER;
• Convening a round table of local energy, housing and social service groups/agencies;
• Developing recommendations for outreach materials; and
• Organizing a series of trainings for local municipal boards and organizations that serve Low Income residents.
d. Grant identification, writing and administration in the described main focus areas to sustain the program in the long term.

2. Overall Agency Responsibilities:
a. Act as a clearinghouse of clean energy and renewable energy projects and programs across the region.
b. Advocate on behalf of the region for sustainability initiatives including, but not limited to, renewable energy, clean energy, addressing climate change, and managing stormwater with state and federal agencies and initiatives, and work towards developing a strong energy and climate change initiative in the agency that is fully funded and sustainable.
c. Collaborate with a variety of regional, local and state environmental, energy, climate change and emergency
management related organizations and agencies to provide data and intelligence across these entities and
participate as partner in variety of initiatives and efforts.
d. Provide staff support to the BRPC Environmental Review Committee

The minimum qualifications for this specific position are:
1. Education or training:
Master’s Degree in planning, environmental science, sustainability or closely related program or closely related field; or a Bachelor’s Degree in planning, environmental science, sustainability or closely related program plus two years of directly related experience. Experience may be substituted for education.
2. Special licenses, registration or certification:
a. Special certification, such as LEAD certification
b. Driver’s license valid for use in the United States
3. Knowledge, skills and abilities of this position:
a. Strong interpersonal skills and ability to communicate and work effectively with a wide range of individuals;
b. Supporting and developing initiatives from conceptual through implementation stages;
c. Developing comprehensive plans;
d. Working with public officials, citizen groups and other stakeholders in determining vision and appropriate initiatives to move priority projects forward;
e. Ability to work with local, regional, state and federal officials and a strong customer orientation;
f. Excellent written and oral communication skills, particularly in translating technical and bureaucratic terms for citizens and elected officials.
g. Strong analytic skills in working with a wide variety of information and data and utilizing it effectively in the public decision-making process;
h. Working proficiency in Microsoft Office programs;
i. Ability to conduct field work and to participate in public meetings in all parts of the region and to travel outside the region utilizing personal vehicle.