Remediation engineers are knowledgeable about toxic waste, the environment, and hazardous materials, and possess technology and communication skills. They work to prevent or minimize damage due to toxic waste, and they typically work in an office, lab or job site, with at least a bachelor's degree.
Remediation engineers work with clients to assess existing environmental damage due to toxic materials and determine how to best remove them or minimize their impact. These engineers can also use remediation systems that treat polluted groundwater or soil. Most hold a bachelor's degree in engineering, with courses in waste management and hazardous materials handling. Some positions call for a graduate degree or professional certification. Many remediation engineers must hold an engineering license, which calls for education, experience and passing comprehensive examinations.
|Required Education||Bachelor's degree in engineering, although some jobs mandate a graduate degree|
|Other Requirements||License often required, as is professional certification|
|Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)*||5% for environmental engineers|
|Mean Salary (2018)*||$92,640 for environmental engineers|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
In 2018, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that environmental engineers, another job title for remediation engineers, earned a median salary of $87,620 a year. At the time, the highest salary was offered by aerospace product and parts manufacturing, which paid an average of $110,310. The majority of environmental and remediation engineers worked in California, though Texas, New York, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts, also employed between 2,800 and 8,700 professionals in each state. Companies in Alaska, Louisiana and California paid the highest average salaries to these engineers.
A remediation engineer is typically responsible for designing systems and machines to remove toxic elements from the environment. As project managers, remediation engineers could perform cost-benefit analyses and handle subcontractor pricing quotes. Other responsibilities might include obtaining necessary permits for site construction work and training staff on how to implement and use remediation systems. Remediation engineers primarily work in an office, laboratory, or at the site of planned remediation, such as an oil spill.
While exact duties vary by position, remediation engineers generally manage hazardous material containment and investigate sites that have been contaminated with chemicals, explosives, metals, or other dangerous materials. A remediation engineer working for a consulting firm could work with various clients and regulatory agencies as well as ensure that businesses and federal groups are in compliance with environmental regulations.
According to the BLS, a bachelor's degree in engineering is usually required, though an advanced degree might be necessary. Relevant studies can include toxicology, waste management, and hazardous materials handling. Employers could require remediation engineers earn OSHA's Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) certification; however, some employers might require additional certifications, such as the Board Certified Environmental Engineer designation awarded by the American Academy of Environmental Engineers.
Remediation engineers might also need to be licensed, which can be obtained by graduating from an engineering program accredited by ABET, Inc. and a passing the fundamental and specialty exams administered by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying. A successful remediation engineer typically needs computer, logic, and communication skills as well as an interest in learning new technology and improved remediation strategies.
Remediation engineers typically need a bachelor's degree, although some positions may require a more advanced degree, certification and licensure. They work for oil companies, waste management companies, the government, and architectural or engineering services companies. Job opportunities in this field are predicted to grow faster than average through the year 2028.