'Work Green, Earn Green'

April 24, 2000
Labor Secretary Alexis M. Herman last week released a list of 10 environmental jobs designed to showcase the broad array of "green occupations" available in today's job market.

If you are interested in protecting the environment, a "green" career may be for you.

"You can work green ... and earn green. Environmental jobs are in demand, and with so many different types of jobs, there's one for almost anyone interested in having Mother Earth for a boss," said Labor Secretary Alexis M. Herman.

For Earth Day 2000, Herman released "Work Green and Earn Green," a list of 10 environmental jobs designed to showcase the broad array of "green occupations" available in today's job market.

Making the list are jobs that require advanced degrees and jobs that require only a high school diploma and associates degree.

Some of these jobs include biological scientist, chemical engineer, environmental engineer, environmental technician, hazardous materials removal worker, park ranger, soil conservationist and wastewater treatment plant operator.

"It's not enough to love nature and enjoy working outdoors," said Herman. "Today's environmental jobs demand skills -- including good mathematics skills, computer literacy and job specific training."

Besides traditional environmental jobs like biological scientist and environmental engineer, the list also emphasizes jobs that are not typically considered "green," such as chemical engineer and urban planner.

"Some chemical engineers specialize in a particular environmental area, such as pollution control," said Herman. "Urban planners are involved in environmental issues ranging from pollution control to wetland preservation or the location of landfills."

To draw attention to environmental careers, Herman donned a hazardous remediation space suit and got a first-hand look at hazmat skills training.

She learned how to safely and correctly obtain hazardous soil and water samples, as well as search and identify buried drums that contained hazardous materials.

To learn more about these and other green jobs, Herman suggested the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Outlook Handbook. The 2000-2001 edition is available on-line at stats.bls.gov/ocohome.htm.

About the Author

EHS Today Staff

EHS Today's editorial staff includes:

Dave Blanchard, Editor-in-Chief: During his career Dave has led the editorial management of many of Endeavor Business Media's best-known brands, including IndustryWeekEHS Today, Material Handling & LogisticsLogistics Today, Supply Chain Technology News, and Business Finance. In addition, he serves as senior content director of the annual Safety Leadership Conference. With over 30 years of B2B media experience, Dave literally wrote the book on supply chain management, Supply Chain Management Best Practices (John Wiley & Sons, 2021), which has been translated into several languages and is currently in its third edition. He is a frequent speaker and moderator at major trade shows and conferences, and has won numerous awards for writing and editing. He is a voting member of the jury of the Logistics Hall of Fame, and is a graduate of Northern Illinois University.

Adrienne Selko, Senior Editor: In addition to her roles with EHS Today and the Safety Leadership Conference, Adrienne is also a senior editor at IndustryWeek and has written about many topics, with her current focus on workforce development strategies. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics. Previously she was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck?, which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list.

Nicole Stempak, Managing Editor:  Nicole Stempak is managing editor of EHS Today and conference content manager of the Safety Leadership Conference.

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