Sustainability jobs are concerned with protecting the environment and promoting a balance between social responsibility and profitability, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The concept of sustainability focuses on using existing resources in ways that won't compromise future resources. Engineers who work in sustainability careers come up with technical solutions to minimize waste and costs. Engineers in this field may also devise ways to improve safety and minimize the risk of injury and illness to employees.
Sustainability professionals may work for consulting firms, manufacturers, government agencies, and other organizations. Chemical, civil, industrial, and environmental engineering jobs are common in the sustainability sector. Related occupations include ecologist jobs and climate change adaptation jobs.
Sustainability Jobs Education Requirements
Engineers with sustainability jobs typically have a bachelor's degree in an engineering field. Most engineers in these careers also have experience in sustainability or a related field. While licensing and certification requirements will vary by specialty, most employers prefer or require sustainability workers to have a professional engineer (PE) license.
Sustainability Jobs Market
While the BLS doesn't offer specific employment outlook information for sustainability careers, most of the engineering specialties qualified for sustainability work are expected to grow faster than average. The BLS expects demand for sustainability professionals to remain strong in coming years as companies increasingly view sustainable practices as profitable practices. Growing concerns about the environment and climate change will also likely drive growth in the sector.
Sustainability Jobs Salary Information
The field of sustainability encompasses hundreds of different jobs, and those in the engineering specialty tend to pay well. The average salaries the BLS reported in 2014 for the engineering professions most common in sustainability are as follows: