Environmental science and protection technicians held about 36,200 jobs in 2014. The industries that employed the most environmental science and protection technicians were as follows:
Management, scientific, and technical consulting services
Local government, excluding education and hospitals
State government, excluding education and hospitals
Environmental science and protection technicians work in laboratories, offices, and the field. Fieldwork offers a variety of settings. For example, a technician may investigate an abandoned manufacturing plant, or work outdoors testing the water quality of lakes and rivers. They may work near streams and rivers, monitoring the levels of pollution caused by runoff from cities and landfills, or they may have to use the crawl spaces under a house in order to neutralize natural health risks such as radon. While working outdoors, they may be exposed to adverse weather conditions.
In the field, environmental science and protection technicians spend most of their time on their feet, which can be physically demanding. They also may need to carry and set up testing equipment, which can involve some heavy lifting and frequent bending and crouching.
Environmental science and protection technicians typically work full time. They may work outdoors in all types of weather. They may also need to travel to meet with clients or to perform fieldwork. This may occasionally require technicians to work long or irregular hours.