Environmental Engineer Job Description [Updated for 2024]

environmental engineer job description

In an era of climate change and sustainability, the role of environmental engineers has never been more crucial.

As society progresses, the need for skilled professionals who can design, manage, and enhance our environmental systems grows ever more urgent.

But what exactly is expected from an environmental engineer?

Whether you are:

  • A job seeker looking to understand the core of this role,
  • A hiring manager trying to outline the perfect candidate,
  • Or simply fascinated by the complex world of environmental engineering,

You’ve come to the right place.

Today, we’re presenting a customizable environmental engineer job description template, designed for easy posting on job boards or career sites.

Let’s delve right into it.

Environmental Engineer Duties and Responsibilities

Environmental Engineers use their skills and knowledge in engineering and science to develop solutions for various environmental issues.

They work to improve recycling, waste disposal, public health, and control of water and air pollution.

They have the following duties and responsibilities:

  • Prepare, review, and update environmental investigation reports
  • Design projects leading to environmental protection, such as water reclamation facilities or air pollution control systems
  • Obtain, update, and maintain plans, permits, and standard operating procedures
  • Provide technical support for environmental remediation projects and for legal actions
  • Analyze scientific data and perform quality-control checks
  • Monitor the progress of environmental improvement programs
  • Inspect industrial and municipal facilities and programs to ensure compliance with environmental regulations
  • Advise corporations and government agencies about procedures for cleaning up contaminated sites
  • Develop and implement environmental management systems to boost environmental performance


Environmental Engineer Job Description Template

Job Brief

We are seeking a knowledgeable and dedicated Environmental Engineer to join our team.

The Environmental Engineer will be primarily responsible for developing, implementing and monitoring environmental strategies, policies and programs that promote sustainable development.

Our ideal candidate will be skilled in conducting environmental impact assessments, reporting on environmental investigations, and devising strategies for managing environmental issues.

The successful candidate will be adept at using their engineering skills to prevent and solve environmental problems.



  • Prepare, review, and update environmental investigation and recommendation reports.
  • Collaborate with environmental scientists, planners, hazardous waste technicians, engineers, and other specialists, to address environmental problems.
  • Obtain, update, and maintain plans, permits, and standard operating procedures.
  • Provide technical support for environmental remediation projects and legal actions.
  • Analyze scientific data and do quality-control checks.
  • Monitor progress of environmental improvement programs.
  • Inspect industrial and municipal facilities and programs to ensure compliance with environmental regulations.
  • Advise corporations and government agencies about procedures for cleaning up contaminated sites.



  • Proven work experience as an Environmental Engineer or similar role.
  • Advanced knowledge of environmental regulations and policies.
  • Excellent data analysis and statistical skills.
  • Proficiency in using software for creating models and simulations.
  • Proficient in technology and scientific software applications.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering or a related field. A Master’s degree is preferred.



  • 401(k)
  • Health insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Retirement plan
  • Paid time off
  • Professional development opportunities


Additional Information

  • Job Title: Environmental Engineer
  • Work Environment: Office setting with frequent travel for site assessments and inspections.
  • Reporting Structure: Reports to the Environmental Engineering Manager.
  • Salary: Salary is based upon candidate experience and qualifications, as well as market and business considerations.
  • Pay Range: $80,000 minimum to $120,000 maximum
  • Location: [City, State] (specify the location or indicate if remote)
  • Employment Type: Full-time
  • Equal Opportunity Statement: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.
  • Application Instructions: Please submit your resume and a cover letter outlining your qualifications and experience to [email address or application portal].


What Does an Environmental Engineer Do?

Environmental Engineers work in various sectors such as government agencies, consulting firms, and industries with a focus on the environment and public health.

They develop, plan, and implement environmental projects such as waste management and disposal, recycling programs, and water reclamation.

Environmental Engineers are also responsible for designing processes and infrastructure to control pollution and protect public health.

For instance, they may design systems for waste water treatment, air pollution control, and solid waste disposal.

They conduct environmental audits to ensure compliance with environmental regulations and policies.

This may involve collecting and analyzing environmental data, evaluating potential environmental impacts of projects, and proposing mitigation measures.

Additionally, they work closely with other professionals including scientists, urban planners, and policy makers to develop solutions to environmental problems and improve sustainability.

Environmental Engineers play a crucial role in environmental conservation efforts by promoting the efficient use of resources and implementing green technology and renewable energy sources.

They also educate the public and policymakers about environmental risks and possible solutions, thereby contributing to public awareness and policy development related to environmental protection.


Environmental Engineer Qualifications and Skills

Environmental Engineers employ a blend of technical skills, theoretical knowledge, and practical problem-solving abilities to create solutions for environmental issues, including:

  • Strong understanding of environmental sciences, biology, chemistry, and physics to develop, implement and enhance environmental strategies and initiatives.
  • Excellent problem-solving abilities to identify, assess and resolve complex environmental issues and challenges.
  • Proficiency in utilizing software tools and techniques for data analysis, modeling, and simulation related to environmental projects.
  • Strong project management skills to oversee the design, development, and implementation of environmental engineering projects, ensuring they are completed on time and within budget.
  • Effective communication skills to articulate complex technical concepts to a diverse range of stakeholders, including clients, colleagues, and regulatory bodies.
  • Detail-oriented approach to comply with environmental laws and regulations, and to ensure the accuracy and quality of environmental assessments and reports.
  • Interpersonal skills to collaborate with interdisciplinary teams including scientists, planners, and experts in law and business to achieve project objectives.
  • Commitment to ongoing learning and development, staying up-to-date with advancements in environmental engineering and sustainability practices.


Environmental Engineer Experience Requirements

Entry-level Environmental Engineers should ideally have 1-2 years of experience, which can be gained through internships, cooperative education programs, or entry-level roles in environmental or civil engineering.

These professionals may also acquire relevant experience from roles such as Environmental Technician, Water Resource Engineer, or Environmental Consultant, where they can practice their technical and environmental assessment skills.

Candidates with 3-5 years of experience may have refined their expertise in areas like environmental remediation, sustainability, waste management, and environmental impact assessments.

They may have also gained experience in project management or coordinating with multidisciplinary teams.

Those with more than 5 years of experience are likely to have leadership experience and may have overseen complex environmental engineering projects.

They may be ready for senior, managerial, or consulting roles, where they can influence policy and strategic planning, and guide less experienced engineers.

They might have also gained specialized experience in sectors like energy, construction, public health, or transportation.

All environmental engineers should ideally be proficient in relevant software such as AutoCAD, GIS, and environmental modeling programs, with experience requirements varying depending on the complexity and demands of the role.

Licensure or certification as a Professional Engineer (PE) is also a common requirement and can be obtained after gaining a few years of professional experience post-graduation.

Advanced degrees or specialized certifications may also be beneficial or required for more senior roles.


Environmental Engineer Education and Training Requirements

Environmental Engineers typically require a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering or a related field such as civil, chemical, or general engineering.

These programs must be accredited by ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology).

The coursework in these programs typically includes areas like chemistry, biology, mathematics, and physics.

A strong understanding of environmental sciences and the potential impacts of engineering projects on the environment and public health is essential.

Further, some roles, particularly those in research or academia, may require a master’s or doctorate degree in environmental engineering.

Additionally, all states require licensing for environmental engineers who offer their services directly to the public.

The requirements for licensing generally include a degree from an ABET-accredited engineering program, a passing score on the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam, relevant work experience, and a passing score on the Professional Engineering (PE) exam.

Some environmental engineers opt to become certified by professional organizations such as the American Academy of Environmental Engineers and Scientists.

This certification may improve job prospects and show dedication to the profession.

Continuing education to keep up with rapid advancements in technology and current environmental regulations is crucial.

This can be done through seminars, workshops, and graduate courses in environmental engineering.


Environmental Engineer Salary Expectations

An Environmental Engineer can expect to earn an average salary of $88,860 (USD) per year.

The actual salary can greatly vary based on factors such as years of experience, level of education, certifications, and the location of the job.


Environmental Engineer Job Description FAQs

What skills does an Environmental Engineer need?

Environmental Engineers require a robust understanding of environmental sciences and engineering principles.

They should possess strong analytical and problem-solving skills to devise and implement sustainable solutions.

They also need to have excellent communication skills to explain complex information to a wide range of audiences.

Additionally, project management skills are crucial as they often have to manage multiple projects simultaneously.


Do Environmental Engineers need a degree?

Yes, aspiring Environmental Engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering or a related field such as civil, chemical, or mechanical engineering.

Some positions, particularly in research or academia, may require a master’s degree or Ph.D. All engineers offering public services must also be licensed.


What should you look for in an Environmental Engineer resume?

Look for a degree in environmental engineering or a related field and, in some states, a professional engineer’s license.

Experience in the field is highly valuable, especially in managing environmental projects.

Any certifications, such as Certified Environmental Engineer or Professional Engineer, are a plus.

Familiarity with environmental laws and regulations, as well as skills in specific software like GIS, should also be considered.


What qualities make a good Environmental Engineer?

A good Environmental Engineer is dedicated to improving the environment and public health.

They demonstrate strong analytical and problem-solving abilities, and they have a keen understanding of environmental science and engineering principles.

Effective communication and teamwork skills are also important, as they often work with diverse teams and explain technical information to non-technical stakeholders.


Is it difficult to hire Environmental Engineers?

The hiring difficulty for Environmental Engineers can vary.

The demand for these professionals is increasing due to growing environmental concerns and regulatory pressures.

However, finding candidates with the right combination of technical skills, experience, and knowledge of environmental laws can be challenging.

As an employer, providing competitive compensation and opportunities for career growth can help attract top talent.



So, there you have it.

Today, we’ve uncovered the true essence of being an environmental engineer.

Surprise, surprise?

It’s not just about doing field tests and studies.

It’s about shaping a sustainable future, one environmental project at a time.

With our comprehensive environmental engineer job description template and real-world examples, you’re ready to take the next step.

But why draw the line there?

Dig deeper with our job description generator. It’s your next step to meticulously crafted job listings or refining your resume to absolute brilliance.

Keep in mind:

Every environmental project is a step towards a greener world.

Let’s build that future. Together.

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