Since environmental issues have been looming, especially in recent years, the world has seen an increase in the need for professionals with experience in environmental science.
If you’re interested in traveling with a career while also focusing on a positive environmental impact, below are five careers that would be perfect for you. All five careers require some amount of fieldwork, which requires travel to whatever project you’re working at the time.
Keep in mind that most of these careers require a bachelor’s degree or higher; however, the final career listed only requires an associate degree in most cases.
With such a demand for jobs like these, the job outlook is generally positive. By choosing one of these careers, you will be in high demand and likely have options for growth.
1. Environmental Scientist
Environmental scientists put their expertise to use by working with government agencies and programs to help collect data and solve environmental issues.
They might work to clean up areas that have been polluted or serve to advise various companies and government agencies dealing with a specific environmental problem.
Environmental scientists do work in a lab most of the time, but since they work on special projects, they often travel to complete fieldwork as well.
The average salary of an environmental scientist is about $70,000 a year, but this varies depending on where the job is based and for which company or agency the scientist works.
Geoscientists work to study the earth’s physical components, including composition and structure. They might work to help environmental scientists clean up polluted or contaminated areas and thus preserve the environment, and they also search for natural resources like metals, petroleum, and groundwater.
Like many careers in environmental science that involve travel, geologists spend time in the field and in labs. They often work with teams on specific environmental projects and are expected to not only collect but also present data.
On average, geoscientists can expect a salary of about $90,000. You might also hear geoscientists referred to as geologists or geophysicists.
Hydrologists use their special scientific knowledge to research the water of the earth, both underground and on the surface. Hydrologists focus on collecting information about the properties of water, as well as its circulation and distribution.
This career often serves as a support to other programs and projects to research environmental issues and situations through monitoring groundwater in various ecosystems and studying watersheds and stormwater.
The job of a hydrologist often requires travel, since hydrologists have to work in the field to conduct their studies on various water sources. Once they collect data, they will likely spend the rest of the time in a laboratory setting. They also present their findings to companies, government agencies, or clients they are working with at the time.
Hydrologists can make salaries anywhere from $50,000 to $120,000 a year, but the average salary is about $80,000 a year.
Ecologists utilize their environmental expertise to solve environmental issues. They survey various ecosystems to assess the organisms within them, noting the size, diversity, and behavior of those populations.
Those who become ecologists tend to work for research institutes, government agencies, conservation charities, and environmental trusts.
Since a good amount of this job requires working out in the field, ecologists do travel a great deal to conduct their scientific research and record data on various plants and animals in certain ecosystems.
After collecting data, ecologists spend the rest of their time in a laboratory or office, analyzing and evaluating the data you’ve gathered and then presenting that data as needed.
Ecologists also spend time writing reports and might even educate local communities about the ecological and environmental challenges in their respective area.
An ecologist’s salary varies depending on where and for whom they work, but expect somewhere between $50,000 and $75,000 a year on average.
5. Environmental Field Technician
Environmental field technicians help to monitor the environment, investigate areas where pollution or contamination may be present, and report their findings to clients.
Much of this job requires fieldwork, so environmental field technicians do travel quite a bit to various sites they are testing for environmental issues.
Tasks to expect as an environmental field technician include setting up equipment to monitor pollution and contamination levels, collecting samples, and analyzing findings in a laboratory or office.
This is more of an entry level position, as environmental field technicians often work to assist environmental engineers or scientists, hydrologists, or scientific teams. They often work for state or local government agencies, consulting firms, or specific laboratories.
The average salary for an environmental field technician is about $36,000; however, many environmental field technician positions only require an associate degree rather than a bachelor’s degree.