Water and Wastewater Engineers

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Also known as:
Architectural Engineer, Bridge Engineer, Civil Engineer, Construction Engineer, Facilities Engineer, Geotechnical Engineer, Highway Engineer, Hydrographic Engineer, Railroad Design Consultant, Research Hydraulic Engineer

ABOUT WATER AND WASTEWATER ENGINEER CAREERS
Video transcript

Just about every large-scale human activity has an impact on the environment. Preventing damage, and managing it when it does occur, is the job of environmental engineers. This is a career that combines practicality and creativity to keep air, soil, and water quality healthy and productive. Environmental engineers use research and design skills to manage waste treatment and pollution control efforts. They also use a variety of tools, and the latest technology, to find efficient ways to monitor environmental well-being. Since much of their work involves meeting government regulations, environmental engineers need to be experts at requesting permits and maintaining plans and procedures that insure others support the systems they put in place. Environmental engineers divide their work between the office and the outdoors. They often do some traveling to collaborate with scientists and experts in law or business. Many work as consultants to help corporations and government agencies with cleanup of contaminated sites. A master's degree in environmental engineering or a related field is required for some positions, while other positions require only a bachelor's degree. When this job is done well, the earth gains a little protection, so future generations can enjoy its bounty.

SNAPSHOT
Design or oversee projects involving provision of potable water, disposal of wastewater and sewage, or prevention of flood-related damage. Prepare environmental documentation for water resources, regulatory program compliance, data management and analysis, and field work. Perform hydraulic modeling and pipeline design.
Leadership
HIGH
Critical decision making
LOW
Level of responsibilities
HIGH
Job challenge and pressure to meet deadlines
LOW
Dealing and handling conflict
LOW
Communication with others
HIGH
Work closely with team members, clients etc.
HIGH
Comfort of the work setting
HIGH
Exposure to extreme environmental conditions
LOW
Exposure to job hazards
LOW
Physical demands
LOW
Daily tasks

Design sludge treatment plants.

Oversee the construction of decentralized or on-site wastewater treatment systems, including reclaimed water facilities.

Perform hydraulic analyses of water supply systems or water distribution networks to model flow characteristics, test for pressure losses, or to identify opportunities to mitigate risks and improve operational efficiency.

Conduct environmental impact studies related to water and wastewater collection, treatment, or distribution.

Design water storage tanks or other water storage facilities.

Analyze and recommend sludge treatment or disposal methods.

Design water distribution systems for potable or non-potable water.

Write technical reports or publications related to water resources development or water use efficiency.

Conduct feasibility studies for the construction of facilities, such as water supply systems, runoff collection networks, water and wastewater treatment plants, or wastewater collection systems.

Design water runoff collection networks, water supply channels, or water supply system networks.

Conduct cost-benefit analyses for the construction of water supply systems, runoff collection networks, water and wastewater treatment plants, or wastewater collection systems.

MAIN ACTIVITIES
Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Interacting With Computers Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Analyzing Data or Information Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
Communicating with Persons Outside Organization Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
AREAS OF KNOWLEDGE
Engineering and Technology Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Design Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Mathematics Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Building and Construction Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
Administration and Management Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Mechanical Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Physics Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
TOP SKILLS
Critical Thinking Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Judgment and Decision Making Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Writing Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Mathematics Using mathematics to solve problems.
Complex Problem Solving Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Systems Analysis Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.