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Environmental Engineering

Earnings Potential

Salaries for an environmental engineer vary depending on the level of education of the individual. The average annual salary for an individual with a bachelor’s degree is $38,579 while an individual with a master’s degree can earn an average of $50,742. The median salary for an environmental engineer is $66,098 a year.

Facts at a glance

  • Environmental engineering stress several areas: process engineering, environmental chemistry, water and wastewater treatment (sanitary engineering), waste reduction/management, and pollution prevention/cleanup.
  • Engineers and scientists develop collection and treatment systems to carry wasteful materials away from household areas.
  • Employment is expected to grow rapidly in next few years.
  • Most Engineers start their career off as scientist, for example, chemist’s biologists, geologists, or Mathematicians. 

Summary of what this career entails

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, environmental engineering is the application of science and engineering principles to the environment. Most engineers work in professional, scientific, government agencies, telecommunication, utilities companies, and technical services industries. They try to improve the environment, to provide healthful water, air, and land for human habitation and other organisms. Environmental engineers also perform many hazardous-waste management studies where they evaluate the significance of the hazard, and advise on treatment and containment to develop regulations to prevent mishaps.

Examples and or details of work

According to Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, environmental engineers, and scientists evaluate water balance within a watershed and determine the available water supply. They also treat water to minimize the risk of infectious diseases. Environmental engineers also design the manufacturing and combustion process to reduce air emissions to acceptable levels.

Degrees that lead to this career

Most positions require an individual to have at least a bachelor’s degree but master’s degree is preferred. Some of the degrees and certification you can attain include:

  • B.S. in Environmental Science
  • B.S. in Environmental Engineering
  • M.S. in Engineering Management
  • M.S. in Environmental Engineering
  • M.S. in Environmental  Technology Management
  • PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering

Specific Career openings in this field

Some of the positions individuals may attain include chemists, engineering and natural managers, mathematicians, science technicians, biological scientists, materials scientist, geoscientists, and conservation scientists.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2006-07 Edition, Engineers, on the Internet at

Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, Environmental Engineers), on the Internet at