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Which Popular Green Career Paths are Best for You?

While sustainability might not be a market sector, more green career paths are available now than ever before, and the number of open jobs is growing at an exponential rate. Companies want to clean up their act, make their workflows more efficient, and focus on sustainable practices to lead the competition in the future. We’ll help you find the best green career for you.

So which green career paths are right for you?

Sustainable and green jobs are everywhere. It isn’t a matter of finding a popular green career, but the best green career path for your interests and skills.

Let’s take a look at some of the most popular green careers.

Conservation Scientist

This job will typically require some kind of degree, but the requirements vary from place to place.

The conservation office needs professionals to ensure that habitats are not being destroyed, and that animals have sustainable numbers in the areas they live.

There is actually quite a lot of diversity in this career, from studying soil samples to doing tree surveys with hi-tech GPS equipment to wetland management and advising landowners on how to best care for their forest, or even to harvest resources from it without damaging local wildlife.

The average salary is around $60,000 per year, and if you like working outside in nature then this could be a really wonderful fit.

Solar Photovoltaic Installer

Maybe you’re more of the type of person who likes to build things. Did you spend time working on your own bicycle as a kid? Do you like electronics?

PV installers design and install solar power systems for private homeowners, big businesses, and even power plants.

The job is mostly related to the energy sector, which should be obvious, but it’s also very hands on and easily accessible without a ton of schooling needed in most cases. Training is on the job, and you can spend as much time learning as you do working.

Solar installers usually make between $40,000 to $50,000 per year.

Sustainability Coordinator

This isn’t something you will jump straight into, but rather a job where you will work your way up from a tech and eventually take control over your own team.

You’ll be keeping track of resources for a business, such as power, water, supplies, and waste. You’ll provide solutions and strategies to make the company greener and more efficient while at the same time increasing their bottom line and boosting relationships with their customers.

There’s quite a bit of social media and advertising work available to. So if that sounds like you, you could be making around $50,000 per year after assisting a few coordinators for a lower, but still very decent, salary.

Environmental Protection Specialist

Want to save the planet? Here’s your chance.

Environmental protection specialists are like the police force for the environment. Their job is to locate and examine waste or disruption to water, air, and soil, and then do something about it.

They supply people and companies with advice on how to manage their waste products and lower their pollution footprint, ideally to zero.

You’ll also be required to enforce and uphold environmental policy, and ensure compliance in your working area.

The average salary is close to $70,000 per year, and there is room to move up to some very high-ranking positions. If you are ambitious, there are plenty of ways that you can help shape the future of environmental protection and help to make and keep our planet green.

Fish and Game Warden

The stewards of protecting animal life. Usually wardens work for the department of agriculture or conservation departments by state.

This is another type of policing job, but also comes with knowing the state laws as they pertain to animals and making sure those laws are enforced. You’ll also field calls and educate people so that they can do what is right by law and for the betterment of local fauna.

Game wardens enforce hunting regulations, but there’s so much more. They work hand in hand with local farmers and agricultural businesses to provide solutions for pest animals and other dangers to livestock and crops, while keeping the safety of wildlife secure.

Game wardens make around $60,000 per year.

Job Availability for Green Career Paths

As you can see, there are quite a few jobs available, and this is only a tiny sampling of what is out there.

Government jobs typically require a degree and range from auditing to policy-making. Tons of hands-on jobs run the gambit, from constructing simple off-grid living solutions to helping to create green factories that mass produce anything you can think of while using sustainable practices.

Even software engineers and data analysts are needed.

New jobs are also being created every day, and the demand for these jobs is growing at an astronomical rate, with some expected to double or more over the next few years.

Positions are constantly opening up, so if you have an area of expertise or something that you are excited about doing to make the world a little greener, there’s probably someone willing to pay you to do it, you only need to look.

If you are schooled in science and have a bachelors or masters degree, consider one of the career paths for environmental science. From biology to road engineering, nearly every sector that employs scientists has staff positions for environmental scientists.

Even without a degree, there are a lot of light labor jobs or field positions to fill every niche.

Happy hunting.

Looking for more great resources to guide your green career search? Check out our Free list of 100 sustainability and green career ideas

Further reading:

Green jobs and job boards to find your next role

MBA Programs in Clean Tech and Sustainability

Working to Save the World: Green Jobs Outlook 2020

Other articles about green careers

Check out our resources library

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