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Environmental Engineering Technician Career

Career Description

Environmental Engineering Technicians apply theory and principles of environmental engineering to modify, test, and operate equipment and devices used in the prevention, control, and remediation of environmental pollution, including waste treatment and site remediation. They may assist in the development of environmental pollution remediation devices under direction of engineer.

Common Work Tasks

  • Work closely with environmental engineers and scientists in developing methods and devices used in the prevention, control, or correction of environmental hazards
  • Inspect and maintain equipment related to air pollution and recycling
  • Inspect water and wastewater treatment systems to ensure that pollution control requirements are met
  • Receive, set up, test, and decontaminate equipment
  • Maintain project logbook records and computer program files
  • Conduct pollution surveys, collecting and analyzing samples such as air and ground water
  • Perform environmental quality work in field and office settings
  • Review technical documents to ensure completeness and conformance to requirements
  • Perform laboratory work such as logging numerical and visual observations, preparing and packaging samples, recording test results, and performing photo documentation
  • Review work plans to schedule activities

Other Job Titles

Environmental Engineering Technicians are also known by other titles, including:

  • Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technicians
  • Civil Engineering Technicians
  • Mechanical Engineering Technicians
  • Electromechanical Engineering Technicians

Education, Training, and Experience

Education and Training
Although it may be possible to qualify for certain engineering technician jobs without formal training, most employers prefer to hire someone with at least a 2-year associate degree in engineering technology. People with college courses in science, engineering, and mathematics may qualify for some positions but may need additional specialized training and experience. Prospective engineering technicians should take as many high school science and math courses as possible to prepare for programs in engineering technology after high school.

  Because many engineering technicians assist in design work, creativity is desirable. Good communication skills and the ability to work well with others also are important as engineering technicians are typically part of a team of engineers and other technicians.


The median annual salary for an environmental engineering technician is $40,000. The top 10 percent earn more than $67,000, and the lowest 10 percent earn less than $25,000. Median earnings in the industries employing the largest number of environmental engineering technicians are:

  • Architectural, Engineering, and Related Services  - $41,410
  • Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services  - $40,100
  • Remediation and Other Waste Management Services  - $41,030
  • Scientific Research and Development Services  - $47,970
  • Employment Services  - $42,320

Job Outlook

  • 2006-2016 Employment growth:  25%
  • Number of new jobs created 2006-2016: 5,200
  • Employment 2006 : 21,000
  • Employment 2016:  26,000
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