Environmental Chemist

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Environmental Chemists are interested in analysing and describing the chemical makeup of the natural environment and the ways that introduced chemicals interact with it. They make use of computer modelling, sampling, analytical and mathematical techniques to provide reports and recommendations to a variety of sectors including:

  • The public sector - in policy advice and environmental management
  • The manufacturing industry - in product development, testing and chemical management
  • The mining and resources industry - preparing reports on possible resource sites and compliance with environmental regulations
  • Waste and environmental management consultancies - making reports and recommendations
  • The construction industry - for major developments, particularly roads and other transport infastructure

Environmental chemists may also provide recommendations on the transport and disposal of potentially hazardous chemicals as well as the development of pollution abatement systems.

While environmental chemists often complete post-graduate study and develop an area of speciality, they must be able to understand terminology and interact with professionals from a variety of disciplines such as geology and biology. Graduates with only a bachelor degree sometimes gain entry into the industry through laboratory and research assistant positions.