“green society” has made environmental sciences a hot growth area among those
with a background in geology, biology, chemistry and physics. Organizations are paying more attention to
keeping environmentally sound, which has increased the job market for those
with the right skill sets. The
government is also increasing the number of people focused on environmental
protection, so you can work for the government evaluating and managing things
like pollution, corporate dumping and environmental toxins. You might find yourself working for a
corporation interested in minimizing its carbon footprint or with corporations,
non-profits or the government whose goal is to monitor the carbon footprint,
waste products or emissions of other organizations.
Career Paths in
are several career paths you can take with a postgraduate degree in
environmental sciences. These include
careers in government, consulting and remediation, military, cleantech and
alternative energy. Let’s take a look at
these career areas:
and Remediation Firms
branches of the military hire environmental scientists to monitor environmental
cleanups on bases and other military property.
You can study and manage the environmental impact of the military’s
various production facilities and weaponry.
refers to technologies that produce energy with minimal harm to the environment
and/or reduce the use of energy.
Examples include renewable energy, green chemistry, green
transportation, and lighting.
Biofuels and Alternative Energy
Alternative Energy Institute was established
in Texas in 1970. It focuses on solar
energy, hydroelectric energy, wind energy, geothermal energy and biomass
energy. There are also several small
companies that focus on one or more of the above-mentioned sources of
energy. Biomass energy involves using
plants to create fuel and involves 15 percent of the total energy used in the
world. Its use is higher in developing
are those fuels created from biomass and can involve solid fuels, liquid fuels
and gaseous fuels. There are numerous
small companies working on defining ways to efficiently create fuel. Companies like Arizona Biodiesel make fuel from wasted
restaurant oils. Amereco Biofuels Corp makes biofuel from
soy-based recycled foods. XL Renewables and other companies make
biofuels from algae.
Typical Job Titles
typical job titles you will find in the federal government are: Environmental Engineer
and Biofuel Engineer. Consulting
titles include Ecological Consultant or Biofuel Consultant, while in the military
you can be a nonmilitary consultant or a higher ranking commissioned
officer. Cleantech and Alternative Energy employers can
hire Research Analysts, Program Managers and basic Scientists with work in the
areas of environmentally friendly energy sources.
Where to Find a Job
corporations have job opportunities listed on their websites. The military has recruiters that can discuss
with you the possibility of joining the military in the capacity of an
environmental scientist. Specialist job
boards include Environmental Career
Is this Job for You?
you are passionate about the environment and want a well-paid job that is all
about protecting the environment or creating additional fuels for our use, you
may wish to entertain the possibility of getting a job in environmental
in environmental sciences usually do not involve being in an office all day. You should be prepared to travel to sites for
study or remediation. Depending on the
employer and the project, you may be working at the site of an environmental cleanup
for months or you may only need to collect samples for further analysis. Most environmental jobs involve less bench
work than in academia. However, you will
need writing and communication skills, especially as a consultant, because you
will be creating reports with your findings.
may be important when it comes to working as an environmental scientist,
especially if you work in a field involving solving environmental
problems. You will usually be working
with a team of other environmental scientists and staff. As a PhD or MS in the areas typically needed
for environmental sciences, you may be a project manager for a large or small
company with interests in the environment.
Pay you can Expect
are decent salaries for those in environmental sciences. If you are a consultant or staff scientist,
you will be paid in the range of $65,000 to $75,000. There are six figure salaries available for
those with the expertise and interest in being a director of a program at the
EPA or NOAA.
environment is a hot topic these days with increasing jobs available for those
interested in improving the impact of man on the environment. It combines skills in physics, chemistry and
biology in ways that help the world live in healthy circumstances.