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Two Rangeland Carbon Field Technicians and one Lab Technician

Position: Two Rangeland Carbon Field Technicians and one Lab Technician, Working Lands Group, Point Blue Conservation Science

Overview: Point Blue Conservation Science is seeking two field technicians and one lab technician to assist in the collection and processing of soil and plant samples throughout California for a project investigating soil health and carbon sequestration on rangelands.

Location:  The field technicians have the option of a flexible home base with travel throughout California; field work will primarily be conducted throughout the San Joaquin Valley, Central Valley, and Central Coast. The lab technician will primarily work at Point Blue headquarters in Petaluma, CA, where the soil processing facility is located.

Job Type: Full time (40 hours per week), Seasonal

Duration: January 15 – May 15, 2022; start and end date flexible (4 months)

Compensation: $20-$25/hour (depending on experience)

Deadline to apply: December 15, 2021

Job Summary:  Carbon sequestration on working lands serves as a natural climate solution and simultaneously provides numerous other ecosystem services. The Rangeland Carbon Monitoring Technicians will assist in soil and plant sampling to gauge changes in carbon with management of rangelands throughout California. The work is part of The Rangeland Carbon Management Project, a Point Blue led study to measure and predict soil health and climate change mitigation outcomes associated with commonly recommended rangeland management practices such as riparian restoration, range seeding, and silvopasture. Two of the technician positions will be responsible for conducting field work in support of this project, and one will be responsible for processing plant and soil samples at our Petaluma headquarters. In addition, the technicians will be responsible for data entry and quality control as necessary.

Essential Duties and Work Environment:

Field Technicians – This position entails ~80% field work and ~20% sample processing, office, and other work

  • Completes soil and plant sampling on rangelands with other Point Blue scientists and staff. Some field days may involve hiking 1-2 miles traversing through steep and uneven terrain and transporting up to 35 lbs; navigation to all sample points is done using a GPS.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Lab Technician – This position entails ~80% lab and office work and ~20% field and other work

  • Completes processing of soil and plant samples (e.g., sieving, drying, shipping) at Point Blue headquarters in Petaluma.
  • Ensures consistent and reliable standardized data are gathered and entered into an online database; ensures quality control of data, scans and archives datasheets.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Desired Qualifications: The ideal candidates have some field work experience, yet the most important characteristics are enthusiasm for land stewardship, carbon dynamics, rangelands or natural history, and willingness to learn on the job.

  • Some understanding of field data collection practices and procedures.
  • Some understanding of scientific research methods and techniques in biological and physical sciences and their application to ecosystem conservation and management activities.
  • Can engage professionally with a diverse group of people including state, federal, tribal, and non-government resource professionals, working lands producers, and the general public.
  • Has basic computer skills (Microsoft Office spreadsheets, word processing, presentation and email programs; skills operating Google Drive programs including Google Sheets, Docs, and Slides.)
  • Can use or learn to use a variety of field and laboratory equipment that may include geographic positioning and information systems, radios, and other basic scientific equipment.
  • Ability to work in the field with livestock present and a general knowledge of working ranch safety/etiquette.
  • Works well alone and as a team, and is open to spending long hours in the field and/or soil processing facility.
  • Is organized, flexible, eager to learn, and self-motivated, with a sense of humor and curiosity.

Work Environment & Physical Requirements:

  • The field technician schedule is variable and involves significant and frequent travel throughout California during the fieldwork season including some evening and weekend work. Use of company vehicle usually available, and use of personal vehicle will be reimbursed as per Point Blue’s expense reimbursement policy. Traveling may include overnight lodging (hotel costs will be covered).
  • The lab technician position operates primarily in a professional office environment (Point Blue Conservation Science HQ- Petaluma, CA), in a soil processing facility, and potentially in nearby field locations.

Required Certifications and/or Licenses:

Valid California driver’s license and favorable driving history, and proof of auto insurance.

To Apply: Please submit applications via email to Chelsea Carey (ccarey@pointblue.org) and Erika Foster (efoster@pointblue.org) by December 15, 2021; subject line Rangeland Carbon Technician Position. All application must include the following components in a single PDF (excluding the video clip, if applicable):

(1) Disclose whether you prefer the field or lab technician position

(2) Resumé (1-2 pages)

(3) Contact information for three references

(4) Either one of the following two options:

  1. a) a letter of interest or written document (~1 page) describing why you are interested in this position, how you hope this position can help advance your own goals, and any previous experience you would like to highlight, OR
  2. b) the above information submitted as a short (<5 min) video

Point Blue:  Point Blue Conservation Science advances conservation of birds, other wildlife and ecosystems through science, partnerships, and outreach. Our highest priority is to reduce the impacts of climate change, habitat loss and other threats on wildlife and people, while developing climate-smart, nature-based solutions. Because of the collaborative climate-smart conservation work we do today, we believe healthy ecosystems will continue to sustain thriving wildlife and human communities well into the future.

COVID Safety: We prefer applicants to be vaccinated and may require wearing of masks regardless of vaccination status if working in close proximity to Point Blue staff, partners, supporters, and others. We require all staff to follow current safety guidelines.

Point Blue is an equal employment opportunity employer and does not discriminate against applicants or employees because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, citizenship status, disability status of an otherwise qualified individual, membership or application for membership in an uniformed service, or membership in any other class protected by applicable law and will make reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities to complete the application and/or participate in the interview process.