Environmental Technician Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Are you searching for an environmental technician job description? Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of an environmental technician. Feel free to use our job description template to produce your own job description. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as an environmental technician.
Who is an Environmental Technician?
An environmental technician is a specialist who keeps an eye on the environment to spot, stop, and manage pollution and contamination sources. They must set up equipment to gather field data, gather samples to assess air, soil, and water pollution, and monitor pollutants from known sources, among other tasks. Additionally, these experts maintain records, write reports, and consult with other experts and decision-makers about test results.
There are numerous disciplines that environmental specialists might concentrate on. These experts can specialize in laboratory tests, fieldwork, or consulting depending on their education and company. Environmental technicians can specialize in environmental remediation, such as cleaning up crude oil spills and decontaminating water contaminated with heavy metals like lead and mercury, with the help of specialized training. Some environmental technicians concentrate on hazardous materials management. They can also focus on public health, biological research, or marine science.
Environmental technicians perform experiments and field research to collect soil samples and other information. Engineers, scientists, and others who assist in the cleanup, monitoring, control, or prevention of pollution use their research. A typical area of expertise for an environmental technologist is soil, water, or air pollution. Although tasks vary by employer and specialty, technicians typically use specialized instruments and equipment to collect samples for laboratory analysis, monitor pollution control systems and devices, such as smokestack air “scrubbers,” and conduct a variety of other tests and investigations to assess pollution issues. To comply with environmental laws, they collect and record data using tight protocols.
Environmental technicians typically don’t operate the machinery and systems intended to reduce or stop pollution. Instead, they evaluate the environment. Some also conduct analyses and present their findings.
By gathering field samples, monitoring the environment, and testing the air, water, and soil nearby a spot, environmental technicians aid in protecting the environment and public health. Usually, an environmental scientist will supervise their job. They might carry out these tasks for a government agency, a testing facility, or a consulting firm. Companies use consulting firms to assist them to comply with environmental legislation or carrying out environmental impact studies for new buildings.
Environmental Technician Job Description
What is an environmental technician job description? An environmental technician job description is simply a list of duties and responsibilities of an environmental technician in an organization. Below are the environmental technician job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write an environmental technician job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
The duties and responsibilities of an environmental technician include the following;
- Evaluate pollution issues, and take water samples from raw, semi-processed, or processed water, industrial wastewater, or water from other sources.
- Install and maintain the data collection equipment.
- Perform bacteriological or other tests in connection with studies on pollution control or the environment.
- Operate both light and heavy machineries such as bobcats, pumps, vacuum cleaners, booms for oil spills, and generators.
- Enter data into a computer and do simple computations.
- Prepare and maintain the applicable reports and records.
- Install tools or stations to keep an eye on and gather pollutants from locations like smokestacks, factories, or mechanical equipment.
- Carry out maintenance and operation responsibilities for groundwater monitoring and cleanup systems.
- Sample the soil and groundwater.
- Describe current and future environmental problems and provide insightful advice on the best preservation measures.
- Apply the laws of chemistry, engineering, meteorology, and agriculture to the collection of data.
- Investigate the chemical makeup of certain liquid, gas, and solid materials in a laboratory setting. involves using common chemistry lab tools such as a PH meter, microscope, autoclave, chemical agents, and centrifuge spectrophotometer.
- Assess the number of contaminants present in chimney gas and other samples.
- Analyze the number of pollutants present in different water sources, such as lakes, processed water, raw water, streams, and industrial wastewater.
- Create and uphold the specifications and layout of an environmental database.
- Prepare speeches, reports, and thorough summaries for industry lectures and briefings.
- Maintain, troubleshoot, repair (when necessary), and put through preventative maintenance: fluid flow, gas flow, chemical reactions, mechanical equipment, and other types of instruments.
- Follow all rules and corporate policies to keep the workplace tidy and secure for all team members.
- Finish all bacteriological testing and other studies.
- Respect legal requirements as well as organizational policies and rules on trash management.
- Utilize materials and equipment wisely to preserve corporate resources while achieving your professional goals.
- Take advantage of educational opportunities, expanding professional networks, joining reputable professional groups, and staying up to date with industry developments, one can maintain and enhance their professional knowledge and skill sets.
- Monitor soil conditions, water quality, and air quality to make sure standards are being fulfilled.
- Calculate the salinity of ocean waters to determine whether they are suitable for swimming or surfing.
- Gather information about the state of the environment, such as taking measurements of air pollution levels or keeping an eye out for changes in wildlife habitats.
- Repair oil leaks from ships or pipelines or clean accidents of hazardous materials.
- Ensure that water is safe for human consumption, and samples are tested for bacteria and other pollutants.
- Keep track of environmental information like temperature and humidity levels.
- Conduct evaluations or audits of building sites after completion to verify adherence to environmental standards.
- Obtain samples of soil or water for laboratory analysis to identify their chemical makeup or potential effects on the environment.
- Ensure that new building projects, such as roads or dams, adhere to federal guidelines, and that the environmental impact of those projects is restored.
- Environmental science bachelor’s degree or a closely related field.
- 3+ years of experience working in a lab or environmental field.
- Complete comprehension of the procedures and methods used in chemistry labs.
- High organization and attention to detail.
- Acquired research abilities.
- Outstanding written communication abilities.
- Leadership: Because they frequently manage and train other personnel, environmental technicians need strong leadership qualities. Having leadership qualities can aid them in making decisions that are advantageous to all parties involved since they collaborate with clients to identify the best solutions for their needs. Being able to inspire people, assign duties efficiently, and give constructive criticism are all examples of leadership skills.
- Environmental Rules: The laws that control their profession must be understood by environmental technicians. This includes being aware of any certifications they might require, how to file paperwork, and how to monitor their environmental impact. They can assure compliance with local laws and regulations as well as their employer’s expectations by understanding these rules.
- Organization: Being organized means being able to keep track of your tasks and equipment. To find what they need when they need it, technicians must be well-organized. Additionally, they can maintain focus, which guarantees that projects are finished on time. Keeping track of paperwork, such as reading logs or data entry, is another aspect of being organized.
- Writing Reports: Writing reports is a common method used by environmental professionals to record their work and provide data. This may entail keeping a written record of the actions they conducted throughout an investigation, such as the tools they employed, the locations where they gathered samples, and the results of those samples. Additionally, summarizing test or experiment results and describing how the results relate to environmental standards may be part of the process.
- GIS: Mapping Using a geographic information system, maps are made using the GIS mapping process. To develop visual representations of data, such as levels of air pollution or water pollution, environmental technicians employ GIS mapping. This enables them to spot potential improvement areas and take appropriate action.
- Laboratory analysis: Laboratory analysis is the capacity to conduct experiments using tools and software from the scientific community. You can use this ability to evaluate environmental samples, such as water, soil, or air samples. For evaluating chemical processes in a lab setting, you could additionally require laboratory analysis abilities.
Laboratory analysis calls for meticulousness and a working understanding of numerous scientific procedures. It’s crucial to comprehend how various chemicals interact with one another and what effects point to safe exposure levels.
- Flexibility: The ability to alter course as necessary. Flexibility might be useful for environmental technicians because they frequently deal with erratic weather conditions. To ensure ongoing data collection, they might decide to stay at work overnight or take a vacation if a storm is forecast and they need to monitor environmental parameters for several days.
- Data entry: Data entry is the process of entering information into a computer system. As an environmental technician, you might be required to input information about the samples and observations you collect while doing inspections. This involves entering data such as location, date, sample type, and outcomes. You can maintain track of your job and make sure that all relevant information is recorded if you have data entry abilities.
- Management of Waste: The management and disposal of waste is the process of waste management. Environmental professionals must understand how to manage hazardous materials because they frequently work with them. This involves being aware of appropriate and safe disposal methods for hazardous materials. Understanding the optimal container types for storing various waste types is also necessary.
- Water Testing: Testing for water quality involves analyzing water samples to see if they adhere to predetermined requirements. When dealing with lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water as well as industrial or municipal water sources, water quality technicians may apply this talent. They can discover potential pollution problems that could harm aquatic life or human health with the aid of this expertise.
- Observation of Details: Environmental experts need to be able to carry out their tasks precisely and completely. This calls for attention to detail, which is having the capacity to concentrate on one thing at a time and do so throughout the process. When completing environmental evaluations or conducting tests, attention to detail is also crucial to ensuring that you fulfill regulatory criteria.
- Communication: The ability to present information is referred to as communication capacity. A job as an environmental specialist may require you to explain technical aspects of a company’s operations or respond to inquiries from clients and coworkers, thus this ability might be very crucial. Strong communication abilities can also aid in project collaboration and workplace relationship management.
- Skills in Problem Solving: Environmental technicians must have the ability to solve problems to fulfill their profession. These abilities are frequently put to use when they are conducting testing, finishing projects, and analyzing data. This is due to the possibility of difficulties, such as equipment failure or unforeseen weather circumstances, preventing them from achieving their objectives.
- Handling Hazardous Materials: The ability to handle hazardous materials is a talent that every environmental professional should possess. This is because they frequently deal with chemicals and other materials that, in the wrong hands, can be harmful. By being able to handle these items safely, you can guard against potential harm to the environment, your coworkers, and yourself.
- Field Work: The time you spend in the place where you are working is known as “fieldwork.” Understanding your surroundings and how they impact the region you’re watching is crucial. This can assist you in making more educated choices regarding the data you should gather, how to interpret it, and how to address any problems that may come up.
- Air sampling: The procedure of gathering air samples for analysis is known as air sampling. To find out if a place has dangerously high amounts of air pollutants like carbon monoxide or volatile organic compounds, environmental professionals utilize air sampling. To obtain precise results, air sampling requires the use of specific tools and procedures.
How to Become an Environmental Technician
- Obtain a degree: Environmental technicians typically hold an associate’s degree in a scientifically related discipline. Some jobs, typically in chemistry or biology, ask for a bachelor’s degree, although the majority do not. Take biology, biochemistry, or organic chemistry classes for either degree to get ready for a career as an environmental technician. Think about looking up employment in your neighborhood to discover what level of education firms want of applicants. This knowledge might help you choose the appropriate educational level for yourself.
- Utilize the laboratories in your classes: As a large portion of their duties includes lab work, environmental technicians spend a lot of time there. Take advantage of lab-intensive courses while pursuing your degree because the more you use the lab, the more at ease you’ll feel there. Utilize all of your lab time to learn about the equipment available and find ways to extend your assignments. To make sure you are studying the correct scientific methodology, ask questions.
- Find an internship: An internship can be a great way to start your career as an environmental technician. They are typically planned during the final semester of your education. Your internship can provide you the opportunity to learn new practical skills while also giving you a professional experience for your resume. Additionally, you can strengthen your professional relationships and even open up career chances.
- Obtain a license: You might require particular licenses depending on the state where you intend to work. To find out what kind of license you might need, check your local laws. When required to do certain sorts of inspections, some employers require specific licenses or training. For instance, certain jobs necessitate OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) training. See if a license or specialized training is required for opportunities close to you by looking at job ads in your region.
- Find employment: After earning your degree, look for a career as an environmental technician or another employment that enables you to work in a lab. You develop the abilities you need as an environmental technician by working hands-on in a lab. If suitable employment is not available right away, think about doing another internship because it will help you build your network in the environmental science industry.
- Continue your education: If you don’t already have a bachelor’s degree and want to work as a senior environmental technician, think about going back to school. You can take specialized training or courses in that area to become an expert in a certain area of environmental science. Attending workshops or continuing education classes about modern technology and advancements in environmental science is also advantageous.
Where to Work as an Environmental Technician
Environmental technicians work in a variety of weather settings both indoors and outside. They might be required to work in unsafe or potentially dangerous conditions, such as on hazardous material-contaminated sites. They might also work on an oil rig or in remote locations like the Arctic. Although environmental technicians normally work 40 hours per week, they occasionally have to put in extra time or be available for emergencies. The task can be physically taxing, and technicians may have to wear protective clothing such as respirators or hazardous materials suits.
Environmental Technician Salary Scale
In the USA, the average environmental technician makes $35,465 a year, or $18.19 an hour. Most experienced workers earn up to $51,647 per year, while entry-level occupations start at $30,228 annually.
In the UK, the average environmental technician makes £25,500 a year, or £13.08 an hour. Most experienced workers earn up to £31,878 per year, while entry-level occupations start at £22,515 annually.
In Canada, an environmental technician makes $51,830 annually or $26.58 per hour. Most experienced workers earn up to $68,986 per year, while entry-level occupations start at $40,000 annually.
Australia’s average environmental technician pay is $94,980 annually or $48.71 per hour. Beginning salaries for entry-level roles are $80,982, while those with the most experience can earn up to $130,906 annually.