Whether you’re embarking on your first job or looking for a change in direction, environmental careers hold much promise for growth. There’s a career path for nearly every interest and skill set. Whether you’d like to work outdoors in nature jobs, conduct research, or promote a cause, there are green jobs in almost every sector of the economy. The following environmental science careers offer a few ways to prosper and save the planet – all with higher-than-average growth predicted.
Environmental scientists work for government agencies, consulting firms, or other private companies and use their knowledge of natural sciences to inform policy that protects humans, animals, and the environment. Like many environmental science careers, this one requires workers to split their time between the office and the field. Environmental scientist positions are expected to increase 11% from 2016 through 2026, a higher-than-average growth rate.
Geoscientists study the earth’s composition and structure. Working both in offices and in the field, they might be searching for an underground water reserve, locating the safest place to build a new bridge, or working to protect cities from the next earthquake. Many geoscientists help to search for and protect natural resources such as water, metals, or petroleum. The need for geoscientists is expected to grow 14% through 2026.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for solar photovoltaic installers is expected to grow by a whopping 105% through 2026. PV installers, as they are familiarly called, assemble, install, and maintain solar panel systems. As the US continues to adopt more sustainable practices, opportunities for qualified individuals to work in these green jobs will continue to be excellent for a long time to come.
Wind turbine technicians, or wind techs, install, inspect, operate, and maintain wind turbines. If you are not a person who likes to sit behind a desk, have no fear of heights, and don’t mind working in a confined space, this career—named the fastest growing occupation of the decade in 2016—is expected to grow by 96% through 2026.
From green building architects and urban planners to mechanical engineers and contractors, these green jobs are growing stronger every year, not only because of the environmental movement but also because of lower operating costs. Across the nation, environmental careers in the green building workforce are rising, as more and more hospitals, office complexes, schools, and homes are building in ways that are more energy efficient. Urban planners, for example, are expected to experience 13% growth through 2026.
Working toward improving recycling, waste disposal, public health, water, and air pollution control, the environmental engineering field is expected to grow 12.4% according to the U.S. Green Building Council. Some of the more specialized nature jobs titles within this field include soil engineer, pollution control engineer, waste management engineer, and hazardous substances engineer.
Urban and regional planners help create communities, accommodate population growth, and revitalize cities and towns. Many specialize in specific areas such as community development, historic preservation, or urban design. Growth in this type of environmental science career is expected to hit 13% through 2026.
Creating a pathway for yourself in environmental careers is a rewarding experience. Check out iHireEnvironmental to find awesome green jobs in your area.