If you enjoy working both indoors and out, would find an interest in some unique detective work, and care about protecting our earth and its inhabitants, a career as an environmental engineer might be the perfect fit for you.
Environmental engineers in general participate in protecting our air, water, soil, and even the earth itself. They have to determine the cause of problems, create solutions, and come up with new ways of preventing a repetition of man-made disasters. Some monitor the conditions of water and air, working to control pollution by promoting recycling and ensuring that waste is disposed of according to current law. read more »
Others are concerned with industrial waste, automobile pollution, acid rain, and ozone depletion. Still others work with oceanographers, geologists, meteorologist and other experts to study weather patterns, predict natural disasters such as earth quakes and hurricanes, and make recommendations for changes in human habits.
The basic concept of environmental engineering can be traced to early societies when people began to realize that their very lives were impacted by environmental conditions. Several early cities developed methods for controlling their sewage in order to avoid contaminating local streams which were used for drinking supplies, and Rome developed a complex system of aqueducts to bring clean water to the people in the region. However, the first major sewage system was actually built in England in the 19th century. This was the beginning of modern environmental engineering and led to the treatment of both water and sewage with the goal of reducing waterborne diseases.
Today’s environmental engineers can be found working in nonprofit organizations, governmental entities, educational and health facilities, in manufacturing industries, and in research positions. Wherever they are found, however, their primary focus is to keep both our air and water clean, disease free, and available to all.
The average environmental engineer makes about $77,000 a year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most jobs require a bachelor’s degree as a minimum, but continuing changes in the environment—some through natural causes and others manmade—create a need for ongoing education in order to remain current with modern problems and their solutions. Still environmental engineering employment is expected to grow the fastest of all engineering careers over the next decade. As technology continues to expand and grow, and earth’s resources continue to be depleted, environmental engineers will be needed both to prevent disasters from happening and to develop ways to clean up problems that do occur. Thus the employment of environmental engineers is expected to be least affected by economic slow-downs.
Several well respected universities now offer degrees in environmental engineers via online study. Use our friendly form to get more information and locate schools that have exactly the program that fits your dream career.