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Environmental Engineer

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Latest Question

I wanted my love for the environment & desire to fix problems to qualify me to study environmental engineering. It feels like my college is denying me that based on my poor test scores. I feel discouraged.

by Qwynci Bowman from Austin

Is it possible at all the be an engineer when you don't fit the mold of one on paper? I believe I will excel in it but it's extremely hard to transfer to the engineering school at this point. Is it still possible for me to work in this field?

Environmental Engineers work to make sure pollutants are not released into the air or water sources and that solid waste is properly disposed. Some environmental engineers devise and build equipment to create a cleaner environment. Others work in management, developing environmental protection plans.


A four-year college degree is required for most environmental engineering jobs. Many have civil engineering degrees but other have environmental, agricultural, chemical, or mechanical engineering.


Since environmental engineers focus on the environment, there is usually a component of outdoor work to their jobs. Many work in industry, but some work with government from local communities to federal agencies. Their work hours are typically the standard 40-hour week, but can vary with the project or type of employer they work for.


The median annual salary for an entry-level environmental engineer is $61,942.*


  • Assess a project's potential effect on endangered species
  • Design methods of accurately measuring acid rain, car emissions, and ozone depletion
  • Work with large industries to reduce their air pollution emissions to acceptable levels
  • Invent better ways of recycling paper, plastic, and glass
  • Provide treatment options for well water contaminated by bacteria and chemicals that potentially have adverse health effects
*Source: 2018


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