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Environmental Specialist Job Description

environmental specialist job description

Are you getting ready to apply for a new environmental specialist job?

This role is for experts in monitoring the impact of different types of pollution on the environment. The main goal is to identify environmental issues and recommend solutions to improve the environment.

It is important to read the job description carefully before applying for this type of role. You need to make sure you meet the education and experience requirements and have the necessary specialist skills.

So, let’s find out more about this role, including taking a look at a typical day in the life of an environmental specialist.

environmental specialist job description

Environmental Specialist Job Description

A typical job description for an environmental specialist should provide an overview of the company or organization. This can include the mission of the organization, the working environment, and the size of the environmental team. There should be an overview of the tasks you are likely to be charged with and the base salary.

In addition to explaining the role, the job description should reveal the type of candidate the hiring manager is looking for. The desired educational background, skills, and experience should be clearly outlined in the job description. There may also be details of other attributes that the ideal candidate for this role should possess.

The Work Environment

This role can take place in a range of settings, including chemical plants and power plants. It often involves a certain amount of fieldwork to test the water and other elements for signs of pollution. This can involve a large amount of travel as well as working outdoors in all types of weather conditions.

Once samples have been collected, you will usually spend time in a lab analyzing them and collecting data. Other parts of this job include preparing reports to illustrate your findings. While much of this work can be completed independently, it is often necessary to collaborate with other experts.

Duties And Responsibilities

When applying for an environmental specialist job, it is important to indicate that you have the necessary experience. The best way to do this is by highlighting your experience with particular duties. Here are the main duties and responsibilities that are typically connected with this role.

Following established procedures

It is important to be aware of the established procedures for different tasks and follow them to the letter. This includes reviewing and signing laboratory reports and completing sampling procedures. Highlighting this experience on your resume shows the hiring manager that you understand how important it is.

Working with hazardous materials

This role involves working with a range of hazardous materials such as chemicals, gases, drugs, and radioactive elements. It is essential to be able to do this in a safe and controlled manner. Even the tiniest error in judgment could result in a very serious and dangerous situation.

Environmental compliance

Highlighting this experience shows that you understand the full range of environmental laws and regulations. This involves ensuring that all the set environmental safety standards are maintained at all times. This can include working closely with federal and state environmental inspectors while carrying out site inspections.

Investigating water quality

Depending on the organization you work for, this could be one of the most important duties you are charged with. Tasks associated with investigating water quality include conducting on-site construction monitoring, conducting computer modeling, and reviewing water quality reports. If this task is associated with the role you are applying for, it is important to highlight your skill and experience.

Skills And Attributes

If you have specialist skills, it is important to make it clear to the hiring manager. You need to choose the right skills and attributes that will make your resume stand out from the crowd. Here is an overview of the most valuable skills that are connected to this role.

Computer skills

You need to have advanced computer skills to do this job successfully. Be experienced in Microsoft Office applications to create reports, spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations. You also need to use a computer to conduct research and analyze data.

Data analysis

A significant part of this role usually involves collecting and analyzing environmental data. You need to have excellent attention to detail to do this and follow the set protocols at all times. If you are experienced at analyzing, comparing, and interpreting data, make sure you highlight these specialist skills.

Communication skills

You need to have excellent written and verbal communication skills to do this job. When writing reports and making presentations, you need to be able to simplify dense and complex information. You may also be called on to deliver speeches on policy changes and explain your data to colleagues.


You are likely to need to collaborate with people from different departments and fields during this role. When you first meet, some people may be hostile if they feel that you are critical of their operations. It is important to make a positive impression and be able to smooth over any potentially tricky situations.

Problem-solving skills

It is essential to be able to work well under pressure and create solutions to serious conflicts quickly and competently. It is often necessary to think outside the box to come up with workable solutions to difficult issues. Being able to identify environmental issues before they escalate can save organizations a lot of time and money.

Organization skills

You will often be working with large numbers of environmental samples and data. It is essential to keep everything properly labeled, filed, and organized to prevent mistakes. When you have a heavy workload, you need to be able to prioritize tasks so that everything is completed on time.


This job often involves standing for long periods in harsh weather conditions and environments. You need to be reasonably physically fit to do this and willing to go above and beyond the call of duty. People who are not willing to step outside of their comfort zone occasionally are likely to struggle with this.

Education And Training

It is necessary to hold a bachelor’s degree in environmental science or a related field to secure an entry-level position. Most employers also require applicants to have at least two years of related work experience. It is also necessary to have extensive knowledge of health and safety programs and environmental laws.

If you are applying for an advanced role, you usually need to hold a master’s degree in environmental science. It is also necessary to earn a special certification to identify yourself as an expert in the field. This involves completing a Certified Environmental Specialist course approved by the Environmental Protection Agency.


Most employers expect experienced environmental specialists to hold a certification. The certification should be accredited by a recognized body and shows that you have completed particular coursework. Here are some of the most common certifications that you can earn to demonstrate your advanced skills.

OSHA Safety Certificate

Earning this special certification shows that you are familiar with the OSHA standards that govern the industry. To receive certification, you need to complete forty hours of coursework and pass an exam. The coursework covers health issues related to work environments, recognition of physical hazards, and the safe collection of hazardous materials.

Certified Environmental Systems Manager

This certification is essential for people who are responsible for implementing environmental management systems. Earning this certification shows employers that you are familiar with ISO 14001-type guidelines and principles.

Certified Environmental Professional

Earning this certification demonstrates your high standards of conduct and professional skills. You usually need to have at least ten years of experience in the field before you can apply for this certification. Your knowledge, abilities, skills, and background are subjected to a formal review process by the National Registry of Environmental Professionals.

Registered Environmental Manager

This advanced certification is accredited by the National Registry of Environmental Professionals. To gain the certification, you need to meet an established level of competence in the field. In addition to completing set coursework, your performance history is reviewed before certification is granted.

Need Some Help With Your Studies?

Well, we’ve found numerous guides on the different specializations you can do, such as the Environmental Health Specialist (C-3714): Passbooks Study Guide, which you can use in conjunction with the Environmental Health Specialist Certification Exam Preparation Notebook, examination study writing notebook, Office writing notebook.

In addition, we found the Environmental Radiation Specialist (C-3715): Passbooks Study Guide, as well as the Environmental Enforcement Specialist (C-3328): Passbooks Study Guide, or perhaps you’d be interested in the Environmental Control Specialist (C-2429): Passbooks Study Guide for you to choose from.

For some guidance, we also found these handbooks on An Introduction to Scientific Research Methods in Geography and Environmental Studies, and The Environmental Case: Translating Values Into Policy, or how about Topophilia – A Study of Environmental Perception, Attitudes, and Values, and even the Environmental Law Handbook all available online in 2023.

Final Thoughts

While it can take time and dedication to qualify as an environmental specialist, there are numerous rewards.

This career path allows you to make a significant contribution to improving the environment. And can have a significant positive impact on the lives of people around the world.

The average salary for an environmental specialist is around $64,000 per year. The top earners in this field can enjoy salaries of at least $110,000 per year. Gaining special certification is a good way to boost your earning potential and can drive career advancement.

All the very best in your new career as an Environmental Specialist!

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