Do Green Jobs Pay More?

engineering-green-livingYou’ve probably noticed Mr Green has a distinct lack of fear when it comes to rolling up his sleeves and getting stuck into a practical project.

Making your own LED light bulbs? Check. Installing solar panels? Check. Putting in a wood burner that heats radiators and water? Check.

He has a secret you see – once upon a time he studied his books, did well at University and became an electrical mechanical engineer, specialising in industrial water treatment plants. So where you and I might flee from a bunch of dangling electric wires with the warning ringing in our ears from our school teachers that one false move and you could turn to dust, Mr Green confidently strides up to any situation and knows exactly what to do.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve noticed things changing in the job market. Not simply from an ‘a job is no longer for life’ mindset but more and more people want to do something they love, something that makes a difference, something that gives them a sense of self-worth…

Green jobs pay more

And there’s good news! The Council of Economic Advisers found that green jobs, on average, pay 10 to 20 percent more than other types of careers, and there is no field that is in greater demand in the green industry than engineering.

Mr Green will be pleased!

Engineers have become some of the world’s foremost minds when it comes to sustainability and green technologies, so if you want a green career with promising pay and an ability to promote green living it might be time to get out the text books.

Fortunately you don’t have to go back to school to become a green engineer. You can easily obtain an accredited online engineering degree at your own pace in the comfort of your own home. Here are some of the more popular types of engineering that are experiencing high demand right now; some of them are completely new to me!

Smart Grid Engineer

The need for power around the world has increased exponentially in the last decade. To manage these electrical power systems and to make sure they perform with utmost efficiency, smart grid engineers will be needed to monitor them and create more advanced systems. This is a relatively new field with lots of opportunities for growth.

Environmental Engineer

Environmental engineers have long been the go-to guys for contractors looking to create sustainable structures and technologies, and are possibly the most traditional of the green engineers. They monitor sites to ensure builders are employing environmentally friendly building practices and help develop solutions to keep surrounding ecosystems safe. A typical project an environmental engineer would work on includes water run-off systems and eco-building developments.

Solar or Geothermal Operations Engineer

As the need and desire for renewable energy sources continues to grow, we are going to see more solar and geothermal plants around the world. Typical tasks a solar or geothermal operations engineer would undertake include managing plant activity to ensure these facilities are performing under optimal and efficient levels. You might also find yourself involved with designing new solar systems then testing and monitoring new facilities.

Electrical Engineer

Electrical engineers will continue to stay in high demand as green energy producing technologies continue to be created. They will be needed to work on wiring and make sure that each technology is as efficient as possible to optimise sustainable energy creation. Projects that a typical green electrical engineer would work on include solar panelling, wind turbines, and hydroelectric plants.

Energy Engineer

Energy engineers are the true green innovators in the field of engineering. They usually combine multiple practices, such as mechanical and electrical engineering, and use that combined knowledge to solve grand scale problems associated with sustainability. Typical projects that energy engineers work on are those associated with fossil fuels and their elimination to minimising the impact of our overall energy consumption.

What about you – did you know these different types of engineers existed or that it could be a lucrative and meaningful career?


  1. nadine sellers on February 2, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    this is the encouraging sort of news i crave, it reinforces the theory that by using our innate intelligence and learned skills, we can effectuate significant changes.
    in praise of those who can calculate nature’s laws and apply them to home and hearth..great!

  2. Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking on February 5, 2012 at 3:11 am

    Oh this is such an interesting post! I am so glad to hear that these jobs actually pay more! Maybe this will get the ball rolling better.