Daniel was nominated for his development of COAST (Caribbean Ocean and Aquaculture Sustainability Facility) where he helped establish the first ever parametric insurance product for the fishing industry.

A leading environmental engineer at the heart of major projects to protect endangered marine habitats has received a ‘highly commended’ accolade at the SocEnv awards.

Prof. Daniel B. Oerther, Professor of Environmental Health Engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology, received his commendation at the virtual awards ceremony on June 5 to coincide with World Environment Day, a United Nations initiative.

Director of Fyrefly Global Sustainability Ltd, Mandhy Senewiratne, and David Symons, UK Director of Sustainability at WSP, were presented as winners of the Environmental Professional of the Year, as the award was shared for the first time.

The judging panel selected Daniel due to his innovative use of finance to create a model to protect and enhance an environment at risk, while supporting a sustainable local economy. His cross-sector communication, engagement and influence was key to his work.

An American science diplomat, social entrepreneur and professor, Daniel was nominated for his development of COAST (Caribbean Ocean and Aquaculture Sustainability Facility) where he helped establish the first ever parametric insurance product for the fishing industry.

The COAST project supports governments’ distribution of funds following extreme weather events that destroy coastal communities, providing cover for losses to the fisheries sector.

In a year in which SocEnv awarded its 10,000th CEnv registration, the judges were impressed by the extremely high standard of nominations received. The judges noted the high calibre of each finalist across a record number of nominations, which resulted in lengthy debates to deduce the final results.

Bruce McGill, Society Chief Executive, said: “Congratulations to Daniel and all those recognised at the SocEnv awards. It is a great initiative that uncovers some truly inspiring projects in sustainability and the protection of the environment through innovative engineering practices.”

A new environmental professional sector is set to be launched by the Society soon. It will provide a dedicated group within the SOE network that represents engineers whose specialist role is in environmental engineering. We welcome enquiries from potential and existing members who may be interested in joining this new sector. Email membership@soe.org.uk.

For more information on how to become a Chartered Environmentalist through the Society, go to: https://www.soe.org.uk/professional-development/professional-registration.html

Images (top to bottom): leading a meeting in Grenada; visiting a landing site in St Lucia;  inspecting flying fish with his children in an open air market in Barbados;   having fun modelling snorkel gear as part of regional community engagement event in Barbados; visiting a landing site in St Lucia.