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May 1, 2024

10+ Green Job Opportunities Worth Considering

Do you love spending time in nature? Do you have a passion for understanding environmental issues or the ecosystems of our world? One of the unique elements of an environmental science major is the number of future careers available to students. With the impacts of climate change and a concern for environmental protection, the expertise in this area intersects with different fields of science and a variety job market sectors such as government, non-profit organizations, consulting firms, research institutions, private industry and more.

Careers related to the environment are in high demand, and we’re highlighting 13 different professions to prove it. Some are likely familiar, but you might be surprised to discover how many opportunities are connected to environmental work. Looking at a variety of job descriptions from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), find out if an environmental science major is right for you.

What is a bachelor’s degree in environmental science?

This is a four-year degree that gives students a broad perspective on theoretical and practical knowledge about ecosystems, covering topics such as ecology, meteorology, geology, biology, physics and chemistry. By gaining a comprehensive understanding of these areas, graduates can work to better understand, protect and sustain the environment.

Jobs for graduates with a bachelor’s in environmental science

1. Atmospheric scientists or climatologists

Atmospheric scientists or climatologists follow data trends and analyze changes in the climate over a long period of time, drawing conclusions from their research and preparing for the future.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for atmospheric scientists or climatologists in 2023 was $92,860 per year, according to the BLS.

2. GIS analysts or physical geographers

GIS analysts or physical geographers use geographic imaging system (GIS) mapping to study the natural environment. For example, they may map landforms, climate, soil types, water and plants. Clients may use their reporting to make choices about natural resources or development.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for GIS analysts or physical geographers in 2023 was $90,880 per year, according to the BLS.

See what this work experience could look like.

3. Hydrologists

Hydrologists are water experts who study all precipitation and how it affects surface water (rivers, lakes, oceans, etc.), groundwater levels and the surrounding environments. They tackle problems related to water quality and quantity across the globe using remote sensing equipment.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for hydrologists in 2023 was $88,770 per year, according to the BLS.

Learn more about real opportunities to work with water here.

4. Geoscientists

Geoscientists are focused on learning about the earth’s geological structure or layers, both historical events and the changes occurring over time. Their work informs clients of risks, hazards and more through reports, maps, testing, etc.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for geoscientists in 2023 was $92,580 per year, according to the BLS.

Check out what a geology study abroad might look like.

5. Microbiologists

Microbiologists study, analyze and report on microorganisms collected from humans, plants, animals or the environment. Those focused on the environment specifically share findings on ecosystems. Microorganisms include tiny life forms such as bacteria, algae and fungi.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for microbiologists in 2023 was $85,470 per year, according to the BLS.

6. Environmental scientists/specialists

Environmental scientists/specialists include a wide range of job opportunities tasked with developing solutions to environmental problems. They often work to resolve issues concerning pollution, contamination or the risk of such occurrences. They may conduct research for clients on how to minimize environmental harm or make recommendations based on previous research. The opportunities for environmental scientists include consulting, compliance, advocacy or management work for large projects or companies.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for environmental scientists/specialists in 2023 was $78,980 per year, according to the BLS.

Get to know an environmental scientist consultant.

7. Agriculture and food scientists

These scientists study and analyze the biological and chemical processes of agricultural production. They often include a focus on soil composition or crop yield improvement each year while balancing the safety and well-being of humans, plants and animals.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for agriculture and food scientists in 2023 was $$76,400 per year, according to the BLS.

8. Conservation scientists and foresters

Conservation scientists and foresters manage and protect natural resources such as parks, forests, rangelands and more. They analyze the impact of human activity and other potential threats as well as help governments and landowners safeguard the environment.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for conservation scientists and foresters in 2023 was $68,300 per year, according to the BLS.

Get a feel for conservation work in action here, here or here.

9. Environmental Engineering Technician

Environmental engineering technicians work to help control and ensure the environmental quality of engineering projects both internally and externally. They aid engineers in developing solutions to control or prevent pollution damage or other environmental impacts of a project.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for environmental engineering technicians in 2023 was $54,000 per year, according to the BLS.

10. Zoologist or Wildlife Biologist

Zoologists and wildlife biologists study how animals interact with their ecosystems. They also analyze the human impact on wildlife and natural habitats. They work to build conversation plans or study a specific species.

Earning potential: The median annual salary for zoologists and wildlife biologists in 2023 was $70,600 per year according to the BLS.

Environmental science jobs that require education beyond a bachelor’s degree

Environmental Lawyer

An environmental lawyer represents clients in legal issues related to climate protection and legal matters related to natural resources. An environmental lawyer may also work for a federal agency. Although an undergraduate degree in environmental science is a good start, law school is required for this occupation.

Environmental Engineer

Environmental engineers use and develop solutions related to the environment. Their projects include waste treatment, site remediation, pollution control and more. Although this job is related to environmental science, an engineering degree is needed to pursue this occupation.


Epidemiologists are public health researchers who study the causes and trends of diseases and/or injuries. Although their work is strongly tied to environmental science, this occupation requires a master’s degree following an environmental science degree.

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