Environmental scientists and geoscientists
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Environmental Scientists and Specialists
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Overview
Environmental scientists and specialists use their knowledge of the natural sciences to protect the environment and human health. They may clean up polluted areas, advise policymakers, or work with industry to reduce waste.
Predicted employment growth
Over the next decade, jobs for environmental scientists and specialists are expected to grow by 11%, and should have about 9,600 job openings a year.
Safety from automation
Environmental scientists and specialists are less likely to be automated than 84% of other careers.
Workforce size
Environmental scientists and specialists, with 89,500 workers, form a larger workforce than 62% of careers.
Education
About 45% of environmental scientists and geoscientists have a graduate-level education, and 99% have at least a bachelor's degree.
Education attained by environmental scientists and geoscientists
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Context: workers with graduate degrees
More environmental scientists and geoscientists have graduate degrees than 91% of other careeers.
Salaries
The median (middle) salary for environmental scientists and specialists is higher than 78% of all other jobs' middle salaries. The graph shows inflation-adjusted salaries for most environmental scientists and specialists.
This job's median $71KAll jobs' median $39K$71K$38K20142015201620172018$0$50K$100K$150K
Context: Median Salary
Gender
Women account for 31% of environmental scientists and geoscientists -- that's a smaller percentage than 53% of other jobs.
Gender of environmental scientists and geoscientists
Men
Women
Context: Salary inequity
For each career, we compared the median (middle) men's salary to the median women's salary. For environmental scientists and geoscientists, the median men's salary was 16% more the median woman's salary.
Race/Origin
About 11% of environmental scientists and geoscientists are minority, and 12% are foreign-born.
Race/origin of environmental scientists and geoscientists
White
Black
Pacific Islander
Hispanic
Asian
American Indian
Multiracial
Other
Context: Foreign-born workers (12%)
Where are the most jobs?
We ranked the number of jobs in Environmental Scientists and Specialists per thousand workers in each state, DC, and Puerto Rico. The darker the blue, the higher the job density.
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
Job benefits
Employer or union-sponsored pension plans are offered to 63% of environmental scientists and geoscientists, and 80% have company-sponsored health insurance (13% have dependents enrolled in their employer's health plan).
Employer-provided health coverage for environmental scientists and geoscientists
100% premiums covered
Partial premiums covered
Plan with no cost sharing
No health insurance
Top college degrees
Here are the top college degrees held by the 100% of people in this job who have at least a bachelor's degree. Some of degrees may link to multiple programs due to the way Census classifies college majors. Click on a program to learn more about career opportunities for people who major in that field.
The downside
Some jobs are more stressful than others, and some are just plain dangerous. The following list gives the percentages of environmental scientists and specialists who report hazardous or difficult situations typically occurring at least once a week.
  • Time Pressure (47%)
SOURCES:24.0 O*NET
Salary and diversity
Salary overview
What do environmental scientists and geoscientists earn?

In this section, we want to give you a clear idea of what you can expect to earn in this career. We use two sources of data here: the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which asks employers to classify their workforce and to report salaries using the SOC-specialty level of reporting, and the American Community Survey (ACS), which asks people to classify their jobs using the broad classifications that ididio uses for career profiles, and to self-report their salaries. For some jobs, the differences in survey approaches between BLS and ACS can paint a very different end-picture. In particular, the ACS data is reported for the larger career group environmental scientists and geoscientists, which combines the data for 3 careers, including environmental scientists and specialists. Whenever possible, we provide data from both sources.

The BLS-compiled salary data is reported by companies for their employees. This data is classified by SOC specialty, and excludes self-employed workers. We first show the distribution of salaries for environmental scientists and specialists, and then we show how the middle (median) salary for environmental scientists and specialists compares to the BLS-computed median salaries of other careers.
Distribution: Salaries for environmental scientists and specialists (BLS Salary Data)
$71K$0$50K$100K$150K
Context: Median salaries across careers (BLS Salary Data)
$71K$0$50K$100K$150K
We compiled household data from the ACS to determine the salaries that people working at least 35 hours a week report themselves to earn. Unlike the BLS estimates, this data includes self-employed wages. Additionally, we only have ACS survey data for the larger career category and not for the specialty level. We first show the full salary distribution for all environmental scientists and geoscientists, and then we show how the median (middle) salary for environmental scientists and geoscientists compares to the median ACS-reported salary of other careers.
Distribution: Salaries for environmental scientists and geoscientists (ACS Salary Data)
$70K$0$50K$100K$150K
Context: Median salaries across careers (ACS Salary Data)
$70K$0$50K$100K$150K
Employers and salary
A look at employers and corresponding salaries
The donut shares the break-down of workers by employer type, and following we show the salary distributions for these workers based on those employer types. For some careers, the salaries can be vastly different between private, government, and self-employment. As with our salary overview, we view the both the BLS economists' salary profiles and the household-reported salaries from ACS to get a thorough understanding of where environmental scientists and specialists work and for what salary. We have the great faith in the accuracy of economist-vetted BLS data; however, the BLS restrictions on which employers are surveyed skews the data a bit (read more in the sources), and the ACS responses provide different and useful categorizations of employers and salaries.
Employers of Environmental scientists and geoscientists (ACS)
Private for-profit (56.4%)
Private not-for-profit (3.1%)
Local government (5.9%)
State government (18.0%)
Federal government (12.6%)
Self-employed incorporated (1.9%)
Self-employed not incorporated (2.1%)
Working without pay (0.0%)
Distribution: Salaries of environmental scientists and geoscientists by type of employer (ACS data)
Following are the salary distributions by employer type calculated by aggregating individual household survey responses. These salaries were reported for the larger career group of environmental scientists and geoscientists, which combines the 3 specialties for this career.
$70K$74K$57K$94K$60K$74K$89K$60K$0$50,000$100,000$150,000$200,000Self-employed not incorporatedSelf-employed incorporatedFederal governmentState governmentLocal governmentPrivate not-for-profitPrivate for-profitAll
Distribution: Salaries of environmental scientists and specialists by type of employer (BLS data)
Following are the salary distributions by employer type as reported by BLS based on large employer-focused surveys. We note that smaller employer categories are not included by BLS. Remember that the BLS salaries are for the specialty environmental scientists and specialists, and may differ signficantly from the ACS salary estimates which combine several career specialties.
$71K$103K$68K$73K$65K$0$50,000$100,000$150,000Federal governmentState governmentLocal governmentPrivateAll
Age and career advancement
Salary growth for environmental scientists and geoscientists

The biggest take-away from the following two charts is the relationship between salary and experience that we can infer from age. Does this job seem to attract especially younger or older workers? Does it reward experience?

Take a minute a look at how much you might expect your salary to increase with each five years' experience, as well as how the numbers working in this career changes. We only provide this data when there are enough consistent ACS survey responses to allow a reasonable margin of error, so for some careers you will see gaps in our reporting of salary by age.

$52K$83K$81K$71K$91K$64K$103K$71K$34K$0$50K$100K$150K$200KSalary distribution20-2425-2930-3435-3940-4445-4950-5455-5960-64
02K4K6K8K10K12KNumber employed20-2425-2930-3435-3940-4445-4950-5455-5960-64

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Gender and Equity
Environmental scientists and geoscientists and gender

With 31% women, this occupation has a lower percentage of women than 53% of careers.

Context: Women in the workforce
31%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Gender of Environmental scientists and geoscientists
Men (69%)
Women (31%)
Distribution: Salaries by gender

As we'll illustrate at the bottom of this section, the median salary for all full-time male workers in the US exceeds the full-time median salary for women by 20%. The situation is a little better for environmental scientists and geoscientists, with the median salary for men 16% higher than the median salary for women. This chart shows you the salary range for most workers by gender.

$63K$73K$0$50K$100K$150KWomenMen
Context: Salary Inequity

Nationwide there are twenty careers for which men do not have a higher median (middle) salary than women. The chart below shows the salary inequity, the percentage by which the median men's salary is higher than the median women's salary, for most jobs. Environmental scientists and geoscientists have one of the middle percentage increases for men's salary, with the increase for the men's median salary over the women's median salary in this job higher than that for 46% of other jobs.

16%0%20%40%60%80%100%

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Race/Origin
Race and origin of environmental scientists and geoscientists

The representation of minority and foreign-born workers is quite different between careers, and the relative pay of those workers also varies significantly between careers. There is a smaller percentage of minority environmental scientists and geoscientists than for 88% of other careers. The percentage of foreign-born workers in this career is near the middle of all careers.

Race/origin of environmental scientists and geoscientists
White (88% )
Asian (5% )
Black (3% )
Multiracial (2% )
Other (1% )
American Indian (1% )
Hispanic (0% )
Pacific Islander (0% )
Context: Representation of minorities in the workforce
11%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Context: Representation of foreign-born workers
12%0%20%40%60%80%100%
Distribution: Salaries for environmental scientists and geoscientists by race/origin

For some careers, there is a pay disparity depending on race or origin, though this is not prevalent. We calculate standard errors for all of our calculations, and when the error is high we do not show results. Therefore, for some jobs will have omitted race/origin categories.

$55K$59K$64K$66K$72K$0$50K$100K$150KAmerican IndianMultiracialBlackAsianWhite
Distribution: Salaries for environmental scientists and geoscientists by nativity
$70K$76K$0$50K$100K$150K$200KAll native citizensAll foreign-born

Our only sources for career data containing age, gender, or origin/race come from the Census Bureau. To provide these breakdowns, we have aggregated ACS person-level career survey responses by career, gender, race, and age. These graphics reflect the results of our aggregations, and are useful for identifying trends. A careful statistical study of the impact of age, gender, and race on salaries would correct for other factors that could be contributing to salary differences.

Pathways to this career
Education requirements and salary
Education attained by environmental scientists and specialists

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), environmental scientists and specialists typically hold a bachelor's degree.

Sometimes the typical education identified by the BLS differs a bit from the reality of the how much education current workers actually have. The donut shows the education level held by people currently working as environmental scientists and geoscientists as reported in responses to the American Community Survey. Following, we investigate whether education level influences salary for environmental scientists and geoscientists.

Education attained by environmental scientists and geoscientists
None
High School
Some College
Associate's Degree
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Professional Deg/Doct
Doctorate
Details: Licensing and certification recommended for environmental scientists and specialists

Environmental scientists and specialists can become Certified Hazardous Materials Managers through the Institute of Hazardous Materials Management. This certification, which must be renewed every 5 years, shows that an environmental scientist or specialist is staying current with developments relevant to the occupation’s work. In addition, the Ecological Society of America offers several levels of certification for environmental scientists who wish to demonstrate their proficiency in ecology.

Distribution: Salary by education level

What level of education is truly needed for environmental scientists and geoscientists? Below we see the distribution of environmental scientists and geoscientists salaries based on the education attained. These comparisons are based on all survey responses by those who identified themselves as environmental scientists and geoscientists, and are not intended as a statistical analysis of salary differences that would correct for non-educational factors that could contribute to high or low earnings.

$63K$63K$81K$78K$101K$0$50K$100K$150K$200KAssociate's Degree (1%)Bachelor's Degree (54%)Master's Degree (36%)Professional Deg/Doct (2%)Doctorate (7%)
Bachelor's degree pathways
College majors held by environmental scientists and geoscientists

This table shows the college majors held by people working as environmental scientists and geoscientists. Select any degree to see detailed information. We are able to connect careers to degrees using the American Community Survey (ACS), and their degrees are defined a little differently from our programs, which are based on standard CIP classifications. Therefore, selecting some degrees will lead to a selection of CIP-level programs from which to choose.

If you see "**" before the name of a degree/program, that means this field is one that the Department of Education believes is preparatory for this career. However, you can see from this list that those recommendations are far from your only path to this job!

Degree
Select any title to learn more about that degree
Percentage of Environmental scientists and geoscientists with this degree
Salary for all majors
Salary distribution (across jobs). Showing 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
Final education level of all people with this major
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Gender of people this bachelor's degree
Men
Women
9.8%
$0$200K$56K
8.3%
$0$200K$63K
4.2%
$0$200K$76K
2.6%
$0$200K$73K
2.2%
$0$200K$61K
1.7%
$0$200K$86K
1.3%
$0$200K$92K
1.1%
$0$200K$52K
1.1%
$0$200K$63K
1.0%
$0$200K$73K
0.9%
$0$200K$83K
0.8%
$0$200K$80K
0.8%
$0$200K$89K
0.7%
$0$200K$60K
The link between degrees and careers
The link between degrees and careers

With the following "sankey" diagram, you can follow the top ten bachelor's degrees held by people working as environmental scientists and geoscientists, and then, in turn, you can see the 10 occupations that hire the most of each degree's graduates. This visualization links fields of studies and careers, suggesting both similar careers and options for degrees. The full list of bachelor's degrees held by environmental scientists and geoscientists given in the previous section reminds us that there are many paths to these careers beyond what we can summarize here.

This job
Top 10 majors
Each major's top ten jobs
Environmental scientists and geoscientistsManagers (specialized areas)Postsecondary teachersElementary and middle school teachersPhysical scientists (specialized areas)Management analystsPhysicians and surgeonsChief executives and legislatorsLawyers, judges, and magistratesSecondary school teachersCompliance officersFirst-line supervisors of office and administrative support workersFirst-line supervisors of retail sales workersDentistsRegistered nursesEpidemiologists and Medical/Life ScientistsClinical laboratory technologists and techniciansPharmacistsApplications and systems software developersComputer systems analystsBiological scientistsSurveyors, cartographers, and photogrammetristsConservation scientists and forestersPolice officersChemists and materials scientistsComputer occupations (specialized areas)Urban and regional plannersWholesale and manufacturing sales representativesEngineers (specialized areas)Computer programmersAccountants and auditorsFinancial managersSecretaries and administrative assistantsHuman resources workersFirst-line supervisors of non-retail sales workersMarketing and sales managersMedical and health services managersGeology and Earth ScienceEnvironmental ScienceBiologyGeosciencesNatural ResourcesManagementChemistryGeographyPhysicsBusiness Management andAdministrationMultidisciplinary or GeneralScienceAll other degrees
Switching Careers
Most common new jobs
The most common next careers for environmental scientists and geoscientists

What jobs will most environmental scientists and geoscientists hold next year?

The data in this chart comes from person interviews for the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey. The survey interviews households eight times over a two-year period, allowing us a glimpse into how people move from job to job. You can see more details from the results of the survey in our last tab in this section, and you can read about our methodology in our source descriptions.

Here we see all of the jobs that at least 1% of environmental scientists and geoscientists reported holding in their second year's survey. Is your future job on this list?

Environmental scientists and geoscientistsManagers (specialized areas)Management analystsPhysical scientists (specialized areas)Compliance officersComputer systems analystsWater and wastewater treatment plant and system operatorsBiological scientistsEnvironmental engineersPostsecondary teachersService sales representativesScience techniciansDesigners
Lateral career moves
Lateral job transitions for environmental scientists and geoscientists

A lateral career transition is a move to a job with similar pay and responsibilities. A move to such a job can offer a change of pace without an increase in stress or a decrease in pay. The following table simply identifies all 6 jobs which were held by at least 1% of survey respondents before working as environmental scientists and geoscientists as well as 1% of respondents after working as environmental scientists and geoscientists. Select a row to investigate the job's full description and determine if it truly offers an opportunity for a lateral transition.

Lateral-move careers for environmental scientists and geoscientists
Annual openings
How many openings are expected each year?
Salary
Salary distribution for people in this occupation. Range is 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Men
Women
Management analysts
87,200
$0$200K$76K
Managers (specialized areas)
84,000
$0$200K$72K
Compliance officers
26,000
$0$200K$65K
Biological scientists
11,200
$0$200K$60K
Environmental engineers
4,100
$0$200K$78K
Physical scientists (specialized areas)
2,000
$0$200K$69K
Full prior and next career listings
Prior and next careers for environmental scientists and geoscientists: full listings

What do people typically do before and after they work as environmental scientists and geoscientists? Here are the full lists of all jobs that at least 1% of environmental scientists and geoscientists surveyed reported as holding a year earlier or later.

Choose which type of transition to view
Prior jobs
Next jobs
Prior careers for environmental scientists and geoscientists
Annual openings
How many openings are expected each year?
Salary
Salary distribution for people in this occupation. Range is 0-$200,000.
Median
Middle 50%
Middle 80%
Education
High School
Some College
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Doctorate
Gender
Men
Women
Percentage Transitioning
What percentage worked in this job the previous year?
Secretaries and administrative assistants
395,200
$0$200K$36K
1.8%
Hand laborers and freight, stock, and material movers
389,900
$0$200K$28K
1.4%
First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers
153,100
$0$200K$48K
1.2%
Management analysts
87,200
$0$200K$76K
1.0%
Managers (specialized areas)
84,000
$0$200K$72K
6.7%
Compliance officers
26,000
$0$200K$65K
2.1%
Environmental scientists and geoscientists
13,900
$0$200K$70K
46.8%
Healthcare practitioners and technical occupations (specialized areas)
11,400
$0$200K$54K
1.5%
Biological scientists
11,200
$0$200K$60K
2.0%
Environmental engineers
4,100
$0$200K$78K
2.9%
Physical scientists (specialized areas)
2,000
$0$200K$69K
2.6%
No occupation
7.4%
Read about environmental scientists and specialists
Responsibilities and activities
Responsibilities and activities

Environmental scientists and specialists typically do the following:

  • Determine data collection methods for research projects, investigations, and surveys
  • Collect and compile environmental data from samples of air, soil, water, food, and other materials for scientific analysis
  • Analyze samples, surveys, and other information to identify and assess threats to the environment
  • Develop plans to prevent, control, or fix environmental problems, such as land or water pollution
  • Provide information and guidance to government officials, businesses, and the general public on possible environmental hazards and health risks
  • Prepare technical reports and presentations that explain their research and findings

Environmental scientists and specialists analyze environmental problems and develop solutions to them. For example, many environmental scientists and specialists work to reclaim lands and waters that have been contaminated by pollution. Others assess the risks that new construction projects pose to the environment and make recommendations to governments and businesses on how to minimize the environmental impact of these projects. Environmental scientists and specialists may do research and provide advice on manufacturing practices, such as advising against the use of chemicals that are known to harm the environment.

The federal government and many state and local governments have regulations to ensure that there is clean air to breathe and safe water to drink, and that there are no hazardous materials in the soil. The regulations also place limits on development, particularly near sensitive ecosystems, such as wetlands. Environmental scientists and specialists who work for governments ensure that the regulations are followed. Other environmental scientists and specialists work for consulting firms that help companies comply with regulations and policies.

Some environmental scientists and specialists focus on environmental regulations that are designed to protect people’s health, while others focus on regulations designed to minimize society’s impact on the ecosystem. The following are examples of types of specialists:

Climate change analysts study effects on ecosystems caused by the changing climate. They may do outreach education activities and grant writing typical of scientists.

Environmental health and safety specialists study how environmental factors affect human health. They investigate potential environmental health risks. For example, they may investigate and address issues arising from soil and water contamination caused by nuclear weapons manufacturing. They also educate the public about health risks that may be present in the environment.

Environmental restoration planners assess polluted sites and determine the cost and activities necessary to clean up the area.

Industrial ecologists work with industry to increase the efficiency of their operations and thereby limit the impacts these activities have on the environment. They analyze costs and benefits of various programs, as well as their impacts on ecosystems.

Other environmental scientists and specialists perform work and receive training similar to that of other physical or life scientists, but they focus on environmental issues. For example, environmental chemists study the effects that various chemicals have on ecosystems. To illustrate, they may study how acids affect plants, animals, and people. Some areas in which they work include waste management and the remediation of contaminated soils, water, and air.

Many people with backgrounds in environmental science become postsecondary teachers or high school teachers.

Personality and skills
Personality and skills

Can you see yourself in the ranks of environmental scientists and specialists? Here are the skills and traits that could lead to success.

Analytical skills
Environmental scientists and specialists base their conclusions on careful analysis of scientific data. They must consider all possible methods and solutions in their analyses.
Communication skills
Environmental scientists and specialists may need to present and explain their findings to audiences of varying backgrounds and write technical reports.
Interpersonal skills
Environmental scientists and specialists typically work on teams along with scientists, engineers, and technicians. Team members must be able to work together effectively to achieve their goals.
Problem-solving skills
Environmental scientists and specialists try to find the best possible solution to problems that affect the environment and people’s health.
Self-discipline
Environmental scientists and specialists may spend a lot of time working alone. They need to stay motivated and get their work done without supervision.
Trends in employment
Salary trends
Distribution and trends: Salaries for environmental scientists and specialists
Choose actual dollars or inflation-adjusted dollars to view
Adjusted for inflation
Historic dollars

In 2018, the median (middle) salary for environmental scientists and specialists was higher than 78% of all other jobs' middle salaries. This graphic shows how the salary distribution (adjusted for inflation) has changed for this job over recent years. The gray line, as a comparison, shows the median salary of all US workers.

This job's median $71KAll jobs' median $39K$67K$38K200420052006200720082009201020112012201320142015201620172018$0$50K$100K$150K
Projected versus actual employment
Exploring actual employment trends versus projected trends

Currently, jobs for environmental scientists and specialists are anticipated to grow by 11% over the next decade; only 23% of jobs are predicted to grow more.

The projected employment for environmental scientists and specialists is the best guess created by talented economists and statisticians at the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). However, as you look through several careers you'll notice that the projections are heavily influenced by past performance and may miss current trends. No one can tell the future, and as new information and better techniques are developed, actual counts and future projections may change. Here's a glimpse at the actual counts versus the projections over time.

2000201020202030020,00040,00060,00080,000100,000120,000
Employment counts
Actual measured employment
BLS 10-year predictions
Variation by state
Employment
State-by-state employment numbers

Some careers tend to be centered in specific parts of the country. For example, most jobs in fashion are in New York or California. Let's see if your dream job is easy to find in your dream location! We have a few choices for viewing the data that can help you get a full employment picture.

Job density versus job count

Which states hire the most environmental scientists and specialists? We wonder if that's a fair question since states come in all sizes, so instead let's start with the question of which states have the highest density of people working as environmental scientists and specialists. You can choose to view the number of jobs per state if you prefer.

BLS vs ACS data

This map defaults to employment information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which provides job totals carefully compiled for accuracy and with a primary focus on how employers describe their workers. The BLS job totals do not count self-employed workers. We've also compiled totals using the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) which are based on how workers describe themselves. Sometimes ACS results are quite a bit different from the employer-based BLS data.

One important factor in the differences between ACS and BLS data is that the ACS numbers are for all environmental scientists and geoscientists, comprised of all specialities listed in the menu bar, and you can choose to view the BLS at the specialty or full career level.

Choose the metric to review
Jobs per 1000 working
Number of jobs
Use this data source
BLS for this specialty
Number of Environmental Scientists and Specialists per 1,000 workers (BLS)
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
0.00.51.01.52.02.5
Salary
Salaries by state
Let's get a feel for where environmental scientists and specialists earn the highest salaries. There are several choices for which data we consider and how we view that data, and each can lead to different conclusions, so please read on...
Median salary versus state ratio

We use two methods to compare salaries across states:

  • In-state comparisons: the ratio of median (middle) salaries for environmental scientists and geoscientists compared to the median salary for all people working in each state, or
  • Median salary: the unaltered median salaries for environmental scientists and geoscientists.

We hope the ratio allows perspective about how salaries may compare to the regional cost-of-living.

BLS vs ACS data

We have two sources for statewide salary information with important distinctions. The BLS data is created by surveying companies, missing individuals who are self-employed or work for smaller companies. The ACS data is compiled from multi-faceted household surveys and may reflect the inconsistencies that people may have in reporting information. The ACS salaries are for all environmental scientists and geoscientists, which combines the specialities from which you can choose at the top of the page.

Choose the metric to review
In-state comparisions
Median salary
Use this data source
BLS for this specialty
Median salary ratio: Environmental Scientists and Specialists to all workers (BLS for this specialty)
The darkest shading corresponds to states in which environmental scientists and specialists earn the highest salary when compared to other jobs in the state. We think this ratio might be a better indicator than the actual salary for your buying power as a state resident.
Select a state to see local area details
AKMEVTNHWAIDMTNDMNMINYMARIORUTWYSDIAWIINOHPANJCTCANVCONEMOILKYWVVAMDDEAZNMKSARTNNCSCDCOKLAMSALGAHITXFLPR
0.00.51.01.52.02.5
Compare to similar jobs

If this job interests you, then use the dots below to find other jobs you might like. The dots closer to the top represent jobs that are like Environmental scientists and geoscientists (shown with a blue star). Look for the dots to the right to find the best salaries! (We pulled salary data from BLS, and they give a top salary value of just over $200K to protect privacy, so our graph would go much higher if the salaries were not top coded.)

How should the career similarity be computed

There are a number of ways to measure the similarity of jobs, here are a few we provide:

  • Interests: Also known as a Holland Code - Are you a thinker? A helper? What fits your personality?
  • Environment: Are there hazards? Will you be comfortable? Will it be stressful?
  • Knowledge: What do you need to know the most about?
  • Physical Abilities: Do you need to especially strong or coordinated?
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