Environment and social

RSK Middle East offers a variety of environmental services. We pride ourselves on treating the environment and the lives that depend on it responsibly. Our diverse environmental services provide sustainable and innovative solutions that benefit our clients and the communities in which we work.


Environmental, social and health impact assessment

We work closely with our clients to help them meet their business objectives and develop projects. One of the ways we achieve this is through preparing comprehensive environmental, social and health impact assessments (ESHIA), which are often required by funders and regulators as part of the project’s approval process. An ESHIA predicts and assesses the potential ESH impacts of a proposed project. It evaluates alternatives and specifies appropriate management control measures and project-specific mitigation measures. It demonstrates to stakeholders that a systematic process for identifying, evaluating and managing the potential positive and negative impacts of a project are in place. Our ESHIAs provide our clients, regulatory authorities and project investors with the confidence they need for the project to proceed. Our multidisciplinary team provides you with a single point of contact who will manage all aspects of the ESHIA, including screening, scoping, baseline surveys and stakeholder engagement. We work with the project’s engineers to develop practical and effective management control measures and project-specific mitigation measures. We provide integrated reports that consider the complex interactions between impacts.

Environmental baseline surveys

Environmental baseline surveys are comprehensive assessments that establish the current environmental conditions of a specific area before any significant industrial, infrastructural or developmental activities are undertaken. They are a vital tool for responsible development and environmental management. The surveys serve as a benchmark against which future changes or impacts on the environment can be measured. Our experienced internal technical experts provide the specialist knowledge required across all the relevant disciplines, including the biological (terrestrial and marine habitats, flora and fauna) and physical (air, noise, groundwater, surface water and soil) environments. They provide a comprehensive understanding of the existing environmental conditions, enabling better decision-making, risk mitigation and the preservation of environmental integrity before any significant changes occur in a specific area.

Socio-economic baseline surveys

Socio-economic baseline surveys are comprehensive assessments that collect and analyse data on various social and economic aspects in a specific area or community. The surveys are a starting point to establish the current social and economic conditions before implementing development projects. They provide valuable insights for planners and stakeholders to design and implement development strategies that address the specific needs and challenges identified in the community or region.

Our experienced team undertakes a range of socio-economic baseline surveys, including archaeology and cultural heritage, focus group discussions, key informant interviews, land use, landscape and visual amenity and traffic count.

Terrestrial ecology

Terrestrial ecology plays a vital role in understanding the complex interactions and dynamics in terrestrial ecosystems. It is crucial for biodiversity conservation, land management, natural resource utilisation and environmental sustainability. We help our clients identify and manage ecological impacts from their operations or projects by providing pragmatic expert advice early. We partner with clients to understand their businesses before applying our comprehensive understanding of applicable legislation, standards, guidelines and international best practice to meet the specific requirements. Our ecology services include scoping, critical habitat assessments, habitat mapping, surveying (habitats, flora, fauna and avifauna), ecological impact assessments, management planning, monitoring, programme development, stakeholder engagement and capacity building.


Marine surveys encompass a range of research, assessments and studies conducted in marine environments, such as oceans, seas, coastal areas and inland waterbodies. The surveys gather data, assess conditions and study various aspects of the marine ecosystem, providing insights into the health and dynamics of the environment. They are conducted to evaluate the potential impacts of human activities on marine ecosystems, ensuring compliance with environmental regulations, and can assist in managing and conserving marine resources sustainably. Our team of marine scientists supports environmental impact assessments in which marine habitats and their associated sensitivities require specific detailed studies as part of a baseline study. Our marine services include undertaking habitat and ecology, seawater, sediment and benthic infauna surveys.


Environmental modelling is a valuable tool in understanding the environment, predicting future scenarios, assessing the behaviour of environmental systems, including air, noise and water, and supporting client decision-making processes.

Air quality

Our air quality specialists offer varied services and engineering solutions for our clients’ needs. We understand the legislation and regulations regarding air quality and the rapid need to curtail emissions. We offer our wealth of experience in carrying out air quality impact assessments for the life cycle of a project both qualitatively and quantitatively. Our services include baseline air quality monitoring using specialised techniques and equipment, air dispersion modelling using AERMOD, CALPUFF, ADMS and Lakes Software’s modelling, odour dispersion modelling using AERMOD, CALPUFF, etc., best available techniques, pollution prevention and control studies. We apply a deep understanding of regulations, legislation and guidance to support clients in achieving compliance efficiently and considering the cost–benefit analysis.


Our acoustics experts offer comprehensive solutions to a wide range of sectors and operations in the region. Our in-depth understanding of the industry standards, national legislation and international best practices enables us to provide engineering solutions to the acoustic needs of our clients. We offer acoustic baseline monitoring, noise and vibration assessments and noise modelling using internationally accredited simulation software such as SoundPLAN and CadnaA. Our experts are well versed in the best available techniques to provide abatement options.


We provide hydrodynamic modelling services to simulate fluid behaviour in various environments. Hydrodynamic modelling involves using mathematical and computational methods to understand and predict the movement of fluids in different settings. The process helps in analysing the behaviour of fluids in natural systems such as rivers, oceans and lakes, as well as in engineered systems such as pipelines, dams and coastal structures. We use this modelling to assist our clients in predicting how these fluids will flow, react to changes in the environment or interact with structures. It is a valuable tool used in diverse fields such as civil engineering, environmental studies, marine biology and offshore industries. By simulating fluid behaviour, we can optimise designs, assess potential risks and better understand the impacts of different scenarios on the environment.

Stakeholder engagement

Stakeholder engagement refers to a broad, inclusive and continuous interaction between a company and groups or individuals potentially impacted by a project. Effective stakeholder engagement ensures that an affected community’s concerns and opinions are taken into consideration when making project decisions. Ongoing and meaningful engagement with stakeholders is an integral part of a project’s process. Stakeholder engagement encompasses a range of activities and approaches and spans the entire duration of a project. The main objectives of stakeholder engagement are to

  • provide project information to stakeholders
  • ensure that stakeholders understand how they might be affected and their potential role in a project
  • provide opportunities for stakeholders to express their opinions and concerns in relation to a project and for these opinions and concerns to be considered.

The engagement techniques vary with location and stakeholder, with particular effort required to ensure a gender balance and the participation of vulnerable groups.

We have extensive experience in stakeholder engagement. Our process includes

  • identifying key stakeholders and undertaking stakeholder analysis and mapping
  • developing stakeholder engagement plans and databases
  • delivering public consultations and stakeholder engagement meetings to identify issues, concerns and questions raised by stakeholders
  • preparing stakeholder engagement reports with findings and analysis of stakeholder comments, questions and concerns raised during meetings
  • developing a project grievance mechanism.


Environmental monitoring

Environmental monitoring is crucial in assessing the health and resilience of ecosystems, understanding the impacts of human activities on the environment and addressing emerging environmental issues. It enables proactive measures to be taken to protect natural resources, mitigate environmental risks and support sustainable development.

We have significant experience in providing environmental monitoring services based on the requirements of the host country’s regulatory authority and existing environmental permit.

Our environmental monitoring services include

  • air quality monitoring
  • terrestrial biodiversity surveys
  • groundwater monitoring and sampling
  • marine ecology surveys
  • noise monitoring
  • naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) monitoring
  • soil and sediment sampling
  • surface water monitoring and sampling.

Environmental and social management plans

Environmental and social management plans (ESMP) are critical documents that ensure that social and environmental impacts and risks identified during the environmental and social impact assessment (ESIA) process are effectively managed during the full life cycle of any project. ESMPs are used by clients and contractors to avoid, minimise or offset environmental and socio-economic impacts during the design, construction, operation or decommissioning phases of a project. Our team of environmental specialists has extensive experience in developing overarching framework ESMPs, as well as construction ESMPs (CESMP), operational ESMPs (OESMP) and decommissioning ESMPs (DESMP) for a wide range of projects involving different sectors, such as infrastructure, mining, transportation, oil and gas, etc. Our team works in partnership with clients and contractors on practical approaches to implementing the ESIA recommendations and relevant best practices and suggests alternate solutions to any identified challenges.

Environmental and social due diligence

Mergers and acquisitions rely on a thorough due diligence process to understand risks and limit liabilities associated with the transaction. We offer efficient and robust environmental and social due diligence services that facilitate informed business outcomes around divestitures, mergers and acquisitions. We help provide a complete picture of risks and liabilities concerning a transaction and support clients by highlighting any material gaps. Our due diligence experts support national and international customers in recognising the opportunities for future performance improvements or value creation and assist in ongoing monitoring activities for internationally funded projects.


There are numerous benefits of environmental and social audits, including legislative compliance, reducing environmental impacts, reducing water, waste and energy costs and lowering risks to human health. An audit is a systematic assessment to evaluate how environmentally and socially responsible an organisation is. Our environmental and social auditors understand the material risks associated with projects and suggest recommendations for mitigating these business risks. They have the tools and techniques to ensure every audit programme meets its unique requirements, such as a compliance audit or a construction or due diligence audit. Our auditors are well versed with national and international environmental and social audit standards and guidelines and regulatory requirements to make an informed decision while identifying gaps and improvement opportunities and proposing recommendations. Subject matter experts and auditors speaking local languages are often included as part of the team to ensure that the audits are meaningful and deliver the desired value.


With recent Conferences of the Parties (COP) being hosted in the Middle East (Egypt 2022 and United Arab Emirates 2023), there is an increased emphasis on environmental and social governance (ESG) in the region and greater transparency from businesses around corporate sustainability performance reporting. Our team of sustainability professionals has decades of experience in supporting clients to create sustainability strategy frameworks, benchmarking against peer companies and developing sustainability reports. In March 2023, the RSK Group joined over 200 of the world’s leading sustainable businesses as the newest member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD). We are aligned with and committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). We are committed to being a global leader in the delivery of sustainable solutions. We work with clients to

  • create authentic sustainability stories, highlighting both successes and failures, challenges and opportunities
  • define topics that are relevant to their organisation and determine corresponding metrics to track progress
  • provide assurance to their data collection process and suggest improvements to data collection and disclosure processes
  • identify and engage with internal and targeted external stakeholders
  • develop written reports with tailored content to address interested parties.

Through performance reporting, we help clients achieve multiple benefits, such as improving internal management systems, attaining better operational performance (and thereby better financial performance) and creating meaningful strong relationships with stakeholders.

Environmental management systems

Compliance assurance programmes, such as establishing and implementing an environmental management system (EMS), are key to improved environmental performance and meeting customer requirements. They often result in cost minimisation. Our capabilities range from conducting reviews of current management systems and identifying gaps to supporting the set up of system frameworks against corporate requirements and national and/or international standards and guidelines. We support clients to address any inadequacies in their EMS by designing a gap closure programme specific to the organisation. We further assist with programme implementation through developing new or updating current procedures or providing training and capacity building of EMS staff.

Geographical information system reporting

In a world increasingly shaped by digital advancements and technology, effectively managing data resources and using state-of-the-art technology are imperative. Adopting a flexible, pragmatic approach and working in partnership with all stakeholders ensure that excellence is achieved in delivering geographic information systems (GIS) and data management services. We use the latest versions of GIS, computer-aided design (CAD) and remote sensing technology solutions to provide a host of specialised services that aim to solve real-world problems and support projects of any size across a broad range of sectors, including renewable energy, oil and gas, power, transport, telecommunications, property development, ecology and conservation. Some of our key GIS-related services include

  • producing traditional high-quality cartographic outputs
  • delivering project data that conform to client specifications and metadata standards
  • deploying web-based mapping applications that make project information privately accessible via web maps
  • facilitating universal access to project information and on-site data collection using smart mobile devices
  • using advanced geoprocessing and spatial analysis tools to inform and support the wide range of specialised environmental services provided by RSK.

We deliver these GIS services across all major disciplines and throughout all phases of the project life cycle.

Aerial surveys

We have more than 20 years’ manned aviation experience coupled with expertise in the use of the latest state-of-the-art unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology. Our services include lidar and photogrammetry, close proximity aerial inspections, orthorectified photography, 3D modelling, thermal surveys, hyperspectral surveys and broadcast-quality video production. Aerial surveys involve using aircraft, UAVs or other aerial platforms to conduct observations, measurements and data collection over large areas of land, water or other terrains. These surveys are used for mapping, surveying and remote environmental monitoring.

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Join our expert speaker Dr Libby Robinson to explore:

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Graduate Environmental Consultants from RSK Middle East have recently been on-site in AlUla.

Rajshree and Dounia have been busy conducting site reconnaissance, terrestrial ecology surveys and landscape and visual amenity surveys for multiple projects.

Are you interested in a career with RSK?

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We have recently partnered with the Centre for Technology Excellence Sarawak (CENTEXS) in Malaysia.

The collaboration involves working on a range of sustainability projects with the Sarawak Government, drawing on the RSK Group network of environmental and engineering professionals.

Dodi Mohammad, of Tradisi Busana PR, has developed a course that draws inspiration from world-renowned designer Prof Datuk (Dr) Jimmy Choo OBE, with the curriculum personally approved by the shoe maestro.

CENTEXS will pilot a sustainability module within this course, supported by RSK`s global sustainability expertise.

➡️ Follow us to find out more about the projects we are working on.

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