21 Entry Level Environmental Jobs for Anyone Looking To Break Into the Environmental Sector
The global pandemic has, unfortunately, brought about a lot of job uncertainty in many areas of the economy.
But there are some great opportunities for people to get into the green and renewable sectors as they are still in their infancy.
For many parts of the environmental economy, there are opportunities similar to the early days of the Internet in the 90s. And even if you start with an entry-level job due to a complete career change, there are some significant opportunities ahead.
So, we did a search for some of the best job opportunities in environmental services and came up with this list.
Best 21 Entry Level Environmental Jobs
1. Environmental Scientist
This is an excellent job opportunity for anyone that may have gone back to college full or part-time to gain a Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Studies.
This job involves a mix of project planning in an office setting as well as fieldwork to assess different environmental impacts.
2. Environmental Planner
Minimum educational requirements for an entry-level environmental planner are a Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Sciences or related field.
The job position involves researching and solving environmental concerns for different types of projects, as well as researching and ensuring compliance with environmental documents and regulations, e.g. the California Environmental Quality Act. 
Environmental planning is urban and regional planning with a focus on sustainability. It aims to analyze and minimize the environmental impacts of proposed construction projects and make sure they meet all environmental regulations. It essentially deals with “shaping” or improving construction projects to make them easier on the earth.
While others will look for the technical expertise of a geology degree, some companies recruit students who are looking for an entry-level environmental job.
This job often involves close work with construction projects. As a result, there is a mix of field and lab work to analyze data samples to know the potential environmental impact of a project.
4. Environmental Technician
This job is similar to a geologist or other eco scientists, but it tends to involve a lot more fieldwork for gathering samples and taking local measurements to assess environmental impact.
Some form of college education in environmental, geological, or water science is a common requirement, and there are many open full-time positions available.
5. Wildlife and Fisheries Biologists
All types of industrial and construction projects end up requiring wildlife assessments, especially when new ones involve expansions into previously untouched parts of nature.
Biologists play a key role in researching specific areas for any potential impact from air, water, and even sound pollution.
6. Natural Resource/Marine Scientist
This is a great opportunity for anyone with a high school diploma, as it provides direct access to specific scientific areas to better understand what’s involved. For anyone who is uncertain about what area to get into from a college perspective, this is an ideal way to sample the jobs involved for a closer look.
7. Air Quality Consultant
This is another job with a lot of prospects as all types of business and government organizations rely on these services to ensure regulatory compliance for emissions.
Most job offers require a Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Sciences with a focus on air quality and pollution.
8. Environmental Test Technician
Here’s another great job option for people with just a high school diploma to gain some exposure to fieldwork in environmental areas. An understanding of national environmental policy decisions will go a long way towards a successful job offer.
9. Environmental Engineer
Companies will require a minimum of a BS in Engineering and/or Environmental Sciences, and there are many great jobs available for graduates.
You can find this kind of engineering job in pretty much every single industry, and it involves making sure that all business processes and reports are fully compliant with environmental regulations.
10. Environmental Horticulture/Agriculture
Anyone with an agricultural or horticultural background will most likely find it easy to jump into a new career that involves any form of commercial growing of plants. There is a large shift in North America to make various parts of agriculture more environmentally friendly and sustainable.
11. Environmental Health Specialist
This is quite a specialized role that requires technical expertise in how work environments and business operations interact with employees and the general public from a health perspective.
A job description for this type of role will typically look for a Bsc in physiology or biology, and the work will involve hands-on tasks to analyze the impact of business processes, machinery, and pollution on human health.
12. Laboratory Technician
This is a job that is heavily science orientated and involves a lot of work on analyzing samples from field tests. Most companies will only accept job applications from people with degrees in biology, chemistry, or physics as it is a very technical role.
13. Field Technician
Many people think of this job as just involving data entry, but it requires technical expertise in the science behind gathering environmental samples for lab analysis. 
It’s a great way to get in at the ground level without a college degree with a lot of on the job training.
14. Environmental Programs Technician
While this is an office-based job, it shouldn't be mistaken for a data entry clerk position. There is a lot more involved in managing environmental data to ensure regulatory compliance.
A good understanding of record-keeping and recording data in a structured way is an absolute must for this job type.
15. Climate Change Advisory Consultant
Many large corporations are investing a lot of money into making their business operations more sustainable. As a result, they rely heavily on people who can help them account for sustainable changes that positively impact the climate.
This job often requires a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree qualification.
16. Water Engineer
This is another job type that is heavily science-related, and applicants will require a relevant education degree and experience in sampling, analyzing, and monitoring water quality.
You’ll likely work in a team of engineers to ensure businesses comply with state and federal laws.
17. Clean Energy Analyst
Everything from utility providers to solar panel installers and large corporations require a lot of data analysis for clean energy projects.
As an entry-level job, successful applicants will work closely with a team of engineers and scientists to create reports for different renewable energy projects.
18. Environmental Protection Specialist
This role involves assessing company information about any operations or projects that have a direct impact on the environment. Your role job is to assess compliance with regulations, and successful applications will require a minimum of a university degree.
19. Production Technician
Every production activity involves certain processes that can impact workers, the public, and the environment. In the position of a production technician, you will be involved in putting environmental policies at the company level into action.
20. Junior Sales Assistant
Some people shy away from a job title that involves sales, but it’s one undervalued area where people without a college education can jump into a great career.
And by being involved in sales of eco-friendly solutions, this should be a career program without the shady car salesman reputation.
21. Field Research Assistant
If you prefer the idea of spending a lot of time outside of an office cubicle, then the job profile of a field researcher will probably be very appealing.
You’ll be responsible for gathering environmental samples and working with engineers to ensure reliable test results.
You can start a career in environmental science by finding entry-level positions that match your current educational credentials. You should also consider applying for college full or part-time courses in a science field that is in demand.
The highest paying environmental jobs are environmental scientists, engineers, and project managers. All require a university degree, and there is no shortage of demand for qualified students to earn a great income.
The main types of environmental jobs are in the science, engineering, health, and sales sectors. Within each area, there are many different roles you can search for to see which ones match your educational level.
No, environmental science isn’t hard, especially if it’s something you have a fundamental level of interest in. It can be a fun and highly rewarding field of study with very rewarding career opportunities.
An environmental scientist salary is over $70,000 on a median basis. Entry-level opportunities often start between $40,000 and $50,000, which makes this such an attractive opportunity for students to better deal with any college debts.
Yes, environmental science is a good career choice to make. Even an entry-level environmental job often provides significantly higher income with many perks, including insurance and further education.
Yes, some environmental scientists travel a lot for their job if they do a lot of fieldwork. This would involve traveling to different worksites and project locations to take environmental samples and monitor changes.
No, environmental studies isn’t a useless degree because there are countless career opportunities open to successful students. Practically every small, medium, and large business in the United States heavily relies on in-house or outsourced environmental services.
The types of environmental jobs in most demand are engineers and scientists with a background in renewable energy. These areas also provide opportunities to work on a team without a college degree and help out with regulatory reports and documents.
The average environmental planner salary is about $55,000. And an entry-level environmental planner can earn over $40,000 depending on the location and types of projects involved.
Just looking at the above list, it should be clear that there is no shortage of entry-level environmental jobs available for all educational and skill levels.
Choosing a job title that matches your interests is the best way to get your foot on the ladder and to plan how to best gain the necessary qualifications.
And if you’d like to see some specific entry level opportunities in various environmental sections of the economy, you can use our Green Jobs Board to search for those.
With our job board, your next career move to an up and coming company could be just one click away.
Find more jobs by category, by city, or by state by checking out more sustainability jobs.