Environmental engineers are involved in planning and performing the engineering duties for solving the environmental problems like pollution control, wastewater treatment, site remediation, public health and safety, etc. They have to apply the engineering principles for preventing and maintaining the environmental health for the betterment of plants, wildlife, and humans. They are responsible for solving these complicated environmental issues by means of applying advanced engineering principles involving the use of biology, chemistry, and environmental science.
The main responsibility of an environmental engineer is to design, plan, and execute their engineering knowledge for preventing and maintaining the environment from the hazards of the pollutants emitted from the manufacturing / production industry. Their main task involves designing the waste management plant, formulating the treatment procedure, monitoring the recycling and reclamation processes, analyzing the waste material for hazardous substances, evaluating its effect on construction and other projects, and evaluating the results for modification of processes. Furthermore, they may be required to carry out the environmental regulation process in compliance with industrially and municipally facilitated programs. They may have to work with the environmental scientist, hazardous waste technician, and other specialists dealing with environmental issues if needed.
The key responsibilities comprises:
Required Qualifications and Skills
The basic qualification required for obtaining this post is a bachelor's degree in environmental engineering. Master's degree or doctorate qualification in environmental engineering or environmental science and technology are preferred generally, but its not the basic requirement for starting the career in this post. Along with this, for working as an environmental engineer, one has to obtain a license for the same. For getting the license, one is required to have a degree from an accredited engineering program, relevant work experience of approximately four years and obtain a passing score on a state examination.
Apart from this, they must have working knowledge of various types of computer programs and softwares essential for program assessment. This includes scientific softwares, analytical software, compliance software, graphic imaging technology, and Auto CAD technology.
As the regulatory authorities turn their inclination towards environmental issues, businesses are bound to hire environmental engineers to comply with the complex structure of environmental regulations. Also, as the person gains experience in this field, he is destined to find a better career prospect for himself. Experienced engineers are assigned with greater job responsibilities, requiring them to handle more important projects which include supervising other environmental engineers and other technicians for accomplishment of the project.
The average annual salary of an environmental engineer falls in the range of $55,000 to $95,000. The starting range for an entry-level professional with a bachelor's degree comes around $47,000 per year, while an experienced professional can earn more than $100,000 per year.
Environmental engineers have to work either in offices, laboratories, or in industrial plants depending on industrial needs and requirements. They have to deal with critical environmental issues, and this may prove fatal if not handled with care. It is beneficial to have a clear knowledge of responsibilities before starting the career, so as to decide if this profile is really suitable for you.