Environmental Chemistry (aka Green Chemistry) is the next best thing to study today for a brilliant tomorrow, we say. A scientific field that is rapidly undergoing evolution, propelled by our current world situation, Environmental Chemistry holds phenomenal possibilities of research, development, and phenomenal career success. Here’s the reason why you should believe it.
What is Environmental or Green Chemistry?
Environmental chemistry is considered important at the societal level as it is associated with environmental impact, pollutants, environmental management, and contamination reduction.
Environmental Chemistry involves the study of the effects that chemicals have on the air, water, and soil and how they impact the environment and human health. Environmental Chemists are therefore often the more public-facing chemists, as the research they conduct helps inform decisions that affect all of us.
Environmental Chemistry vs Green Chemistry
The key difference between green chemistry and environmental chemistry is that green chemistry is a chemical technique whereas environmental chemistry is a discipline
Why Study Environmental Chemistry?
Are you a problem solver who wants to be a part of a change? Do you want to be part of a revolution that solves changes related to our environment?
Your door to excellence lies with the study of Environmental Chemistry and a future towards sustainable development.
Today, more than ever before we know the urgent need to preserve and take care of our environment. As time and technology have progressed, we have made significant developments to improve our lives and lifestyles.
Much of these improvements and enhancements affect the complex systems of our environment, to the extent that climate change is now a reality. Besides the several other challenges that pose a threat. Environmental chemistry is invested in studying not only the chemical workings of our environment but also in creating
Urgent Social Demand
As we sit at the brink of a world that is fast changing owing to climatic, environmental and biological threats, the study of the physical science of Environmental Chemistry holds promise for a better tomorrow. To preserve and protect our future tomorrow, it is necessary to understand our environment and the challenges it faces.
Environmental Chemistry is one of the most important fields of study now with galloping opportunities to consider and take up. It’s a field of study that will equip one to look for answers to all the questions about the environment as well as other areas like toxicology, biochemistry, public health and most importantly, epidemiology.
Environmental chemists study how the unpolluted environment works and find out the sources, transmission, reaction and impact of chemicals from anthropological activities on the environment. There has never been a more urgent social demand for the skills and know-how of environmental chemists than we face now.
This demand testifies the future expanding scope of this field of study and why choosing Environmental Chemistry now could be your next best career move.
Environmental Chemistry opens up a multidisciplinary field of learning that investigates the scientific study of chemical and biochemical processes that make up the environment.
While the field involves the study of air, soil and hydraulic chemistry, it relies heavily on other environmental disciplines like environmental engineering and toxicology and branches of chemistry like analytical, inorganic, organic, and physical chemistry.
As an interdisciplinary field of study, Environmental Science includes:
- Geology (and Earth Sciences)
- Analytical Chemistry
- Ecology (the study of ecosystems)
- Toxicology (the study of adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms)
- Hydrology (the study of water)
- Molecular and Cell Biology
- Soil Science
Expanding Careers Scopes
Environmental Chemistry as a multidisciplinary field of study expands and broadens the scope for future possibilities and flexibility in research, development and career opportunities. Geology to atmospheric sciences, marine sciences, environmental toxicology, environmental law or earth sciences – the options to diversify are vast and increasing whether you take it up as your major in undergraduate study or after your postgraduate research on this.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job demand for environmental chemists will increase by about 6% between 2020 and 2030, with about 9,100 annual openings in the field projected during this time.
Job Opportunities in the Field of Environmental Chemistry
As a multidisciplinary field of study, environmental chemists have multiple career and job options at their disposal. From chemical and pharma industries to health and safety, education, renewable energy, public health, waste management and biotechnology—there are multiple high-demand job opportunities available in all of these domains and more. Environmental chemists are also highly employed by the state central or federal governments for land, air, and water management and other quality assurance and regulatory bodies.
The increasing occurrence of environmental contamination due to anthropogenic activities is alarming environmental and health authorities.
Growing awareness regarding environmental protection, environmental pollution prevention, safer industrial ecology, and cleaner production technologies has propelled tremendous efforts towards eliminating pollution problems and protecting public health and the environment.
Environmental and Green chemistry is a key necessity to eliminate or minimize any side effects of remediation activities towards contaminated water, air, and soil. Many materials and processes have been developed for green environmental applications.
Most environmental chemists are employed by remediation firms. Environmental remediation is the removal of pollution or contaminants from water (both groundwater and surface water) and soil. These waste products are removed for the protection of human health, as well as to restore the environment.
The remediation sector is an interdisciplinary field that involves chemistry and environmental biotechnology. It’s going to have tremendous research and job opportunities in the coming years.
Entry-Level Jobs for Environmental Chemistry Graduates
Common employment destinations include:
- Water Treatment Specialist in Water Treatment and Waste Disposal
- Environmental Assessment Analyst
- Environmental Auditor
- Environmental Consultant
- Government Scientist (Provincial and Federal)
- Research Associate in Universities
- Environmental Health & Safety Coordinator in Chemical Product Distributors
- Quality Assurance in Manufacturing (Food, Paper, Chemical, Plastics)
- Analytical Specialist in Engineering Consulting
Top Sectors of Employment for Environmental Chemistry Graduates
- Manufacturing (Chemical, Pharmaceutical)
- Research and Development
- Health and Safety
- Renewable Energy
- Government (Federal, Regional, Provincial, Municipal)
- Sales and Marketing
- Waste Management
- In India, entry-level graduates can earn between INR 2 – 5 Lacs per annum.
- The median salary for chemists and material scientists in the USA was $80,680 as of May 2020.
- In the UK, environmental salaries range from £18,000 – £32,000 per year.
Best Universities for Environmental Chemistry
Choosing Environmental Chemistry as your field of study opens doors to some of the best institutions for Bachelor’s, Masters or research programmes. Some of the best-rated programmes in Environmental Chemistry are available at the following schools:
- MIT (USA)
- University of Toronto (Canada)
- NTNU (Norway)
- University of Washington, Seatle (USA)
- Texas A&M University (USA)
- Stockholm University (Sweden)
- George Washington University (USA)
- Univeristy of Copenhagen (Denmark)
- University of Aberdeen (UK)
- Imperial College London (UK)
- University of York (UK)
- University of Ottawa (Canada)
- Nottingham Trent University (UK)
- University of Edinburgh (UK)
- University of California, Berkeley (USA)
- University of York (UK)
- University College Cork (Ireland)
- Arizona State University (USA)
- University of Southampton (UK)
When looking up your programs abroad, it is most important to remember to not confuse Environmental Chemistry with Green Chemistry, which is dedicated to the study of eliminating pollution at the source. However, some universities do use the terms interchangeably.
Now that you are sure, what are you waiting for? Get to your research board and look up your dream universities and colleges or get in touch with us to smoothly sail through the application process.
Featured Image Source: MIT