Pollution Control Engineer

Pinpoint how buildings will create pollution and stop it before it starts.
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Quick Stats


Salary Range
$49,000 – $119,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Pollution Control Engineers do?

During the Industrial Revolution, manufacturing plants spewed chemicals into the sky, dumped dyes into the water, and filled the air with the screech and scream of machinery. Many products were developed, of course, but the environment suffered as a result. In modern times, this sort of pollution is not accepted, and it’s no longer an unmanageable part of the manufacturing process. A Pollution Control Engineer can design systems to isolate and control pollutants.

When you’re a Pollution Control Engineer, you begin a project with the design phase of a new building, where you determine what machinery will be used and how much pollution that equipment will generate. Using modeling programs, you develop systems to trap and contain that pollution. In some projects, you design air filtration systems to capture small airborne particles. In others, you develop water treatment facilities to clean and cool the water before it’s released.

When the project is in construction, you visit the site periodically and inspect the installation. The Contractor may have questions about your design, and you answer all questions in writing. Keeping a paper trail keeps your company’s Lawyer from visiting your office.

Existing buildings may also need modifications. An Air Analyst or Environmental Engineering Technician takes samples of the air and water in the building, and you review those readings. If you spot a problem, you design systems to control the pollution. Some discrepancies may be so severe that you’re forced to report the problem to law enforcement.

The laws that regulate pollution change frequently, and part of your job as a Pollution Control Engineer is to read technical journals, magazine articles, and online reports to familiarize yourself with the changes. Attending conferences also helps you learn about new control techniques.

Should I be a Pollution Control Engineer?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Air Pollution Analyst, Air-Pollution Engineer, Flood Control Engineer, Hazardous Waste Management Control Engineer See More

    How to Become a
    Pollution Control Engineer

    Most Pollution Control Engineers have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaa9ga&chl=|||bachelor%27s+%2890%25%29|master%27s+%2810%25%29|&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,90
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