Emissions Principal

Job Description

Supporting the sustainability of the GB railway is one of RSSB’s strategic priorities. This is delivered by RSSB’s Sustainable Development team. The team manages a cross industry sustainable development programme delivering the Sustainable Rail Strategy with GB Rail.

Operating across the industry the Emissions Principal will be the senior subject matter expert covering carbon, air quality and noise – the three categories of emissions from the railway that impact the environment and local communities.

Alongside a Principal on Social Sustainability this role will report to the Director Sustainable Development.  The position will oversee a team of 4 technical roles including specialists looking across the three emissions categories.


  • Oversee the ‘Net Zero Carbon Rail’, ‘Clean Air’ and ‘Quieter Railway’ topics within the industry’s Sustainable Rail Blueprint. Lead the technical team to ensure these are developed and initiatives required to deliver the industry ambition are progressed.
  • Develop, gain and maintain consensus from a wide range of stakeholders, including senior industry executives, on a programme of work that will deliver change across the industry to drive decarbonisation, reducing harmful pollutants and noise nuisance.
  • Take the lead in ongoing technical dialogue with colleagues from DfT, NR, GBR(TT) ROSCO’s, TOCs and FOCs, challenging them to deliver the SR Blueprint ambitions for the emissions topics, to innovate and build the case for investment.
  • Take advantage of synergies across the 3 main emissions topics to ensure efficiency in research, stakeholder engagement, policy input and implementation/embedding.
  • Work with the Social Sustainability Principal to ensure environmental, health and social outcomes are monetised and considered in industry decision making.
  • Lead the input for RSSB on policy, rail reform consultations to ensure the emissions agenda is adequately referenced to deliver on the strategic goals in the SRS.
  • Liaise with peers from other parts of the transport and infrastructure sectors to bring best practice for emissions measurement and performance monitoring into the railway.
  • Maintain up-to-date expertise in reduction and mitigation approaches for environmental emissions, keeping up to date with all relevant industry, government, and technical developments
  • Oversee the technical specialist roles day to day work within the Sustainable Rail Programme team keeping track of emissions project time/cost/quality
  • Oversee and approve the agendas of the Air Quality, Decarbonisation, Infrastructure Carbon and Noise Technical Working Groups to ensure these industry forums are informed and taking action on the initiatives to deliver the emissions aspects of the SRS.
  • Proactively shape the emissions agenda for the Sustainable Rail Leadership Group and the Sustainable Rail Executive.
  • Manage, mentor and coach technical specialist roles to ensure the quality and timely delivery of their work, provide suitable development opportunities and assist them in the management of their workload.



  • Experience and knowledge of technological and operational best practice for air quality, low/zero carbon and noise in an operational rail context
  • Understanding of emissions issues at technical, policy and industry level
  • Knowledge of the interaction between emissions from combustion as they affect noise and carbon footprint as well as local air quality
  • Effective stakeholder engagement and communication skills including ability to influence and consider the contributions of multiple internal and external stakeholders to develop consensus among conflicting viewpoints
  • Experience of processing complex data and information and synthesising it for internal and external audiences
  • Ability to maintain the bigger picture while focussing on tactical solutions
  • Experience of managing a relevant research programme and managing consultancy supply base as required
  • Ability to get to the heart of a complex problem and provide solutions at strategic and tactical level


  • Knowledge of Transport Appraisal Guidance/Scottish Transport Appraisal Guidance and how they relate to emissions
  • Experience of feeding into policymaking
  • Experience of developing and delivering sustainability strategy
  • Experience of working with engine and rolling stock manufacturers to improve the emissions performance of trains
  • Knowledge and understanding of organisations in the GB rail sector and how they operate
  • Relevant degree or recognised industry professional accreditation

Early applications are encouraged, as we may close this vacancy before the advertised deadline if sufficient numbers of applications are received.


We value diversity and equal opportunities in employment and are committed to creating a workplace which is inclusive to everyone. As a member of the Disability Confident Scheme, we encourage candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria, to apply for our jobs.

We understand the importance of work-life balance and we offer our staff the flexibility to work within our core hours and the option to vary their location between both the office and home. If you are looking for further flexibility, speak to us at interview stage so that we can consider your request.

We value our staff and we offer a competitive benefits package to ensure our staff can achieve their best throughout their journey with us. This includes 30 days annual leave (plus bank holidays); a holiday buy and sell scheme; private medical and dental cover; a season ticket loan and travel subsidy; access to a cycle to work scheme; volunteer leave; a performance related bonus and pension.