ENVIRONMENTAL CONSULTANT SALARY: Average Salary for Entry Level Consultants

environmental consultant salary

Have you ever considered what it’s like to be an environmental consultant? Or what are the requirements and educational background for this fast-paced and exciting career path? Environmental consulting necessitates a wide range of skill sets, training, research and analytical experience, and regulatory knowledge in order to work across a wide range of public and private companies, government sectors, and organizations. In this article, we’ll look at the job description of an environmental consultant, including the expected salary for the entry-level, senior-level, and ERM. We’ve also included the average salary for an environmental consultant in California.

Environmental science is one of the most common educational backgrounds for environmental consultants. This field encompasses many of the fundamental scientific disciplines required for environmental assessments and analysis, such as chemistry, biology, geology, and physics (any of which individually would still make an excellent major for this work). Many environmental consultants are also engineers. These, taken together, provide the educational framework for the vast majority of an environmental consultant’s technical proficiency.

There are numerous career routes available for this type of profession. Environmental consultants analyze and provide insight into environmental concerns for both public and private industries; property acquisition, development, and construction; public works and infrastructure; health compliance and safety regulations; sustainability and energy efficiency; and much more! Working in compliance is excellent preparation for a career as an environmental consultant because it provides you with a thorough understanding of the regulations governing the environment, human health, hazardous substances, and what information is required for various audits and assessments.

What is the role of an environmental consultant?

An environmental consultant combines rigorous scientific knowledge, familiarity with regulatory requirements, and technical expertise to conduct thorough environmental assessments in order to identify and minimize risks that could result in legal action or fines, ensure compliance with current laws, and protect health and safety. An environmental consultant conducts both field and desk-based research and writes detailed scientific reports on their findings and/or recommendations for a wide range of clients and projects.

In general, they are hired to determine whether water, air, or land contamination will have a negative impact on people, habitats, or groundwater sources, for example. They will evaluate and interpret available data in conjunction with local, state, and federal guidelines, and then provide solutions based on their findings.

For example, if someone is considering buying a piece of land for commercial development, an environmental consultant is hired to fully assess the site and research previous investigations and historical uses prior to a transaction. Or they may conduct field surveys and collect data to establish baseline pollution levels for an industrial infrastructure project. They may be called to testify as expert witnesses for cases involving environmental liability.

There has been a growing tendency toward incorporating renewable energy sources in order to reduce emissions and overall energy consumption. Tighter government rules on energy efficiency standards, as well as incentives for sustainability programs, have reflected this. Environmental consultants are in high demand at organizations and businesses that are investing in the future research, development, and implementation of energy and sustainability solutions.

When would you require the services of an environmental consultant?

An environmental consultant can offer insight and expertise on a variety of issues, including:

  •  property assessments for potential contamination concerns
  •  environmental impact assessments
  •  environmental audits 
  • air, water, and soil assessment 
  • environmental management and remediation solutions
  • dealing with biological and chemical hazards 
  • regulatory and legislative compliance 
  • waste management policies
  • sustainability and energy solutions

What is the starting salary for an entry-level environmental consultant?

The average hourly salary for an entry-level environmental consultant in the United States was $23.61 per hour as of March 21, 2022.

The majority of entry-level environmental consultant salaries in the United States presently vary from $16.11 (25th percentile) to $28.85 (75th percentile). The average salary range for an entry-level environmental consultant varies substantially (up to $12.74), implying that there may be several prospects for growth and increased income dependent on skill level, location, and years of experience.

The entry-level environmental consultant job market in Dallas, TX, and the surrounding area is quite active. An entry-level environmental consultant in your region earns $24 per hour on average, which is $0.01 (0 percent) higher than the national average hourly wage of $23.61. Texas ranks 48th out of 50 states in terms of entry-level environmental consultant salaries.

What are the top ten cities with the highest pay for entry-level environmental consultant jobs?

There are ten cities where the usual entry-level environmental consultant income is higher than the national average. Fremont, CA tops the list, with San Jose, CA, and Oakland CA close behind in second and third place. Oakland, CA outperforms the national average by $9,334 (19.0 percent), and Fremont, CA outperforms the national average by another $11,736 (23.9 percent).

Importantly, the Entry Level Environmental Consultant job market in Fremont, CA is somewhat active, with only a few organizations presently hiring for this type of post.

With average salaries greater than the national average in these ten cities, the chances for economic advancement by shifting locales as an Entry Level Environmental Consultant appear to be extremely lucrative.

Finally, another factor to consider is the average salary for these top ten cities varies very little at 6% between Fremont, CA and Sunnyvale, CA, reinforcing the limited potential for much wage advancement. The possibility of a lower cost of living may be the best factor to use when considering location and salary for an Entry Level Environmental Consultant role.

Average Salary For an Entry Level Environmental Consultant

CityAnnual SalaryMonthly PayWeekly PayHourly Wage
Fremont, CA$60,839$5,070$1,170$29.25
San Jose, CA$59,105$4,925$1,137$28.42
Oakland, CA$58,438$4,870$1,124$28.10
Tanaina, AK$58,208$4,851$1,119$27.98
Wasilla, AK$58,208$4,851$1,119$27.98
Hayward, CA$57,214$4,768$1,100$27.51
Jackson, WY$57,117$4,760$1,098$27.46
Norwalk, CT$56,976$4,748$1,096$27.39
Seattle, WA$56,815$4,735$1,093$27.32
Sunnyvale, CA$56,787$4,732$1,092$27.30

What are the top five best-paying related entry-level environmental consultant jobs in the U.S.

At least five jobs related to the entry-level environmental consultant job category pay more per year than a typical entry-level environmental consultant salary. Some top examples of these roles include Environmental Engineering Manager, Environmental Engineer Consultant, and Senior Environmental Manager.

Importantly, all of these jobs are paid between $38,981 (79.4%) and $43,263 (88.1%) more than the average Entry Level Environmental Consultant salary of $49,103. If you’re qualified, getting hired for one of these related Entry Level Environmental Consultant jobs may help you make more money than that of the average Entry Level Environmental Consultant position.

Job TitleAnnual SalaryMonthly PayWeekly PayHourly Wage
Environmental Engineering Manager$92,366$7,697$1,776$44.41
Environmental Engineer Consultant$91,996$7,666$1,769$44.23
Senior Environmental Manager$90,903$7,575$1,748$43.70
Environmental Engineering Consultant$88,511$7,376$1,702$42.55
Environmental Sciences$88,084$7,340$1,694$42.35

Average Salary for a Senior Environmental Consultant

The average annual salary for a Senior Environmental Consultant in the United States is $81,976 per year as of March 21, 2022.

In case you need a quick salary calculator, that works out to about $39.41 per hour. This equates to $1,576 each week or $6,831 per month.

The bulk of Senior Environmental Consultant salaries in the United States now ranges from $56,500 (25th percentile) to $104,000 (75th percentile), with top earners (90th percentile) earning $120,000. The average salary range for a Senior Environmental Consultant varies substantially (up to $47,500), implying that there may be numerous prospects for development and increased pay dependent on skill level, location, and years of experience.

The Senior Environmental Consultant job market in Dallas, TX, and the surrounding area is quite active. A Senior Environmental Consultant in your region earns an average annual income of $82,019, which is $43 (0 percent) higher than the national average annual salary of $81,976. Texas ranks 42nd out of 50 states in terms of Senior Environmental Consultant salary.

Average Salary for an Environmental Consultant in California

The average annual salary for an Environmental Consultant in California is $49,296 as of March 21, 2022. In case you need a quick salary calculation, that works out to about $23.70 per hour. This equates to $948 each week or $4,108 per month.

The majority of Environmental Consultant salaries in California now vary from $39,324 (25th percentile) to $68,325 (75th percentile), with top earners (90th percentile) earning $80,123.

The average salary range for an Environmental Consultant ranges substantially (up to $29,001), implying that there may be numerous prospects for promotion and greater income dependent on skill level, location, and years of experience.

According to recent job posting activity, the California Environmental Consultant job market is not extremely active, as few organizations are actively hiring.

California is ranked 32nd out of 50 states in terms of Environmental Consultant salary.

What is the Salary of an Environmental Consultant Salary at ERM?

Employees at ERM earn a national average pay of $60,310 per year or $29.0 per hour. However, there is a substantial disparity between the top 10% of earners and the poorest 10% of earners. The highest-paid employees at ERM can earn more than $116,000 per year, while the lowest-paid employees earn less than $31,000. ERM personnel in various organizational responsibilities typically get varying compensation. Employees in the Finance function, for example, get average annual pay of $92,379, while employees in the Engineering function earn an average annual compensation of $91,313. Geographically, New York, NY, Seattle, WA, and Walnut Creek, CA have all been reported to pay the highest wages to ERM specialists. ERM is in the Professional industry and has a yearly revenue of around $5 million.

What are the advantages of working as an environmental consultant?

Environmental consulting is an excellent way to gain experience in a variety of environmental sectors, pursue freelance opportunities, and develop a wide range of transferable skills. ECs frequently work more flexible hours than others and, depending on the type of work they are assigned to, may be required to travel extensively. Consultants frequently have access to a company car or credit card, which allows them to buy meals for clients or conduct business transactions. Finally, because ECs work with a variety of clients, they are able to develop a large environmental network as a result of their work.

What are the disadvantages of working as an environmental consultant?

As with any career, there are some significant drawbacks to consider; it is critical to ensure that any job allows for adequate work-life balance and aligns with your values. Some employers may require you to track your billable hours and work overtime in order to complete the job. This level of autonomy entails a high level of trust and self-motivation. On that note, it can be difficult to stay motivated, as some aspects of environmental consulting (collecting samples, analyzing data, etc.) can be monotonous for some. On the other hand, it may be hard to stay motivated when dealing with difficult clients.

In Conclusion,

If you want to get started as an environmental consultant, the easiest method to learn about the job is to connect with ECs on LinkedIn and leverage your network to learn about the day-to-day activities. Volunteering, joining a board or advisory committee, or job shadowing working environmental consultants can all provide opportunities to learn the skills you need.

Environmental Consultant Salary FAQs

What do you do as an environmental consultant?

As an environmental consultant, you give your clients expert assessment and advice on topics relating to the management of environmental issues.

Where do environmental consultants make the most money?

Although there are many Environmental Consultant positions available in the United States, the Midwest has a considerable number of them. California is the best state for Environmental Consultant employment in the country, and Oregon has the second-highest median compensation. The biggest money is made by environmental consultants in Eureka.

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