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Environmental Engineering Technicians

Environmental engineering technicians are involved in the development of methods and devices which are used to prevent, control or fix environmental hazards. An environmental engineering technician surveys the effects pollution has on the environment and produces informative charts and graphs with the data.

They also inspect and maintain equipment related to air pollution and recycling. Some environmental engineering technicians inspect water and wastewater treatment systems. An environmental engineering technician may monitor compliance with environmental regulations regarding lead, asbestos and other substances.

Environmental engineering technicians inspect, test, operate and decontaminate various types of equipment utilized to control and remediate environmental pollution. These technicians also perform pollution surveys and collect and analyze samples.

Some common job titles are environmental specialist, industrial waste inspector, environmental technician, environmental field technician and environmental engineering assistant.

Responsibilities

  • Set up, test and decontaminate equipment
  • Examine technical documents to ensure completeness and conformance to requirements
  • Test samples in laboratories
  • Order lab equipment and materials
  • Inspect facilities to monitor compliance with regulations governing various substances
  • Assist environmental engineers develop environmental remediation devices
  • Arrange for the safe disposal of hazardous materials
  • Perform pollution surveys, collecting and analyzing samples

Job Characteristics

Environmental engineering technicians work 40 hours per week in offices, laboratories or industrial facilities. Some technicians may be required to travel. Engineering technicians are usually part of a team, thus the ability to work well with others and good communications skills are important.

Employment Outlook

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected a 25% employment growth for environmental engineering technicians from 2006 to 2016 which is much faster than the average for all occupations. Demand for these technicians will occur due to increasing public health concerns resulting from population growth and an increasing emphasis on preventing problems rather than controlling existing problems. In addition, the median annual earnings for environmental engineering technicians in 2008 was $41,100.

Education, Certification, and Licensing

Most environmental engineering technicians have earned an associate degree in environmental engineering technology, hazardous materials information systems technology or environmental technology. Educational programs are provided by vocational schools, technical institutes and community colleges.

Technical institutes usually offer a lot of technical training through application and practice, however they usually offer less general education and theory than community colleges. A number of colleges offer bachelor's degrees in engineering technology, however graduates of these programs are often employed as technologists or applied engineers and not as technicians.

Many private and public schools offer technical training and the type and quality of training varies significantly. Students may want to ask perspective employers for their school preferences. Students should also ask a school representative about the types of jobs graduates have obtained.

Employers usually don't require engineering technicians to be certified, however, individuals with certification may have a competitive advantage. The National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies provides certification programs for several engineering technology specialties.

Resources

Major Employers

The primary employment sectors are architectural, engineering and related services; management, scientific and technical consulting services; remediation and other waste management services, water treatment and disposal; and scientific research and development services.

Schools for Environmental Engineering Technicians are listed in the Browse Schools Section.

Environmental Engineering Technicians Skills

Below are the skills needed to be environmental engineering technicians according to their importance on the scale of 1 to 5 (1 being lowest and 5 being highest) and competency level on a scale of 1 to 7 (1 being lowest and 7 being highest).

   
Skill NameImportanceCompetence
Critical Thinking3.884
Reading Comprehension3.884
Active Listening3.884
Active Learning3.753.88
Speaking3.384

Environmental Engineering Technicians Abilities

Below are the abilities needed to be environmental engineering technicians according to their importance on the scale of 1 to 5 (1 being lowest and 5 being highest) and competency level on a scale of 1 to 7 (1 being lowest and 7 being highest).

   
Ability NameImportanceCompetence
Inductive Reasoning44
Written Comprehension44.75
Deductive Reasoning43.88
Oral Comprehension3.884.5
Oral Expression3.884

Environmental Engineering Technicians Knowledge

Below are the knowledge areas needed to be environmental engineering technicians according to their importance on the scale of 1 to 5 (1 being lowest and 5 being highest) and competency level on a scale of 1 to 7 (1 being lowest and 7 being highest).

   
Knowledge AreaImportanceCompetence
Engineering and Technology3.714.3
Mathematics3.574.59
Customer and Personal Service3.543.72
English Language3.423.83
Chemistry3.354.12

Environmental Engineering Technicians Work activities

Below are the work activities involved in being environmental engineering technicians according to their importance on the scale of 1 to 5 (1 being lowest and 5 being highest) and competency level on a scale of 1 to 7 (1 being lowest and 5 being highest).

   
Work ActivityImportanceCompetence
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates4.114.24
Getting Information4.033.79
Documenting/Recording Information3.913.98
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards3.874.12
Interacting With Computers3.752.97

Environmental Engineering Technicians Work styles

Below are the work styles involved in being environmental engineering technicians according to their importance on the scale of 1 to 5 (1 being lowest and 5 being highest).

   
Work StyleImportance
Cooperation4.3
Attention to Detail4.26
Integrity4.23
Dependability4.21
Initiative4.11

Metro Areas Sorted by Total Employment for
Environmental Engineering Technicians

Listed below are the 10 largest metro areas based on the total number of people employed in Environmental Engineering Technicians jobs , as of 2017

   
Metro AreaTotal EmploymentAnnual Mean Salary
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim900 $49,080
Baltimore-Columbia-Towson570 $57,760
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell550 $43,220
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward530 $62,390
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue400 $72,250
Knoxville360 $65,150
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario330 $64,870
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land310 $76,780
Pittsburgh290 $51,210
San Diego-Carlsbad250 $67,360

Compare Total Employment & Salaries for Environmental Engineering Technicians

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Total employment and salary for professions similar to environmental engineering technicians

Source : 2017 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; O*NET® 22.1 Database, O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development, Employment & Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, onetonline.org

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We have some additional detailed pages at the state level for Environmental Engineering Technicians.

Numbers in parentheses are counts of relevant campus-based schools in the state; online schools may also be available.