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How to Build a Career in Sustainability: 14 Jobs

Contribute to our planet's future in your career. Let's explore jobs promoting sustainable practices.

Professional man working with sustainable energy concepts

Looking for a purposeful career? Here's a guide to jobs that let you make a difference, even beyond the STEM fields. Dive into the world of sustainability careers and make a meaningful environmental impact. Let's explore!

Careers in Sustainability

Is there Money in Sustainability?

Yes, sustainability is profitable. When businesses adopt sustainable practices, they see cost savings from improved efficiency. Energy conservation, waste reduction, and water-saving measures can significantly cut expenses.

Embracing eco-friendly practices can also enhance product quality, in turn elevating a brand's reputation and sales. Many investors seek out sustainable investments. Additionally, with an ever-tightening global environmental regulatory landscape, companies adopting these practices are better able to sidestep penalties and comply with emerging regulations.

Occupation Indicative Salary Commercial and Resource Benefits
Agronomist $92,073 Boosts yields, reduces costs via efficient crop management, improving agricultural profit margins.
Ecologist $99,886 Enables better land use, reducing potential legal issues and associated costs tied to environmental impacts.
Energy Engineer $91,889 Reduces energy costs and reliance on non-renewable energy sources, providing long-term savings.
Environmental Consultant $104,136 Mitigates environmental risks, avoiding potential fines, litigation, and reputational damage.
Environmental Engineer $103,640 Designs efficient systems reducing operational costs and environmental liabilities.
Environmental Scientist $84,880 Informs policy to avoid regulatory fines and creates plans for resource use reduction, lowering expenses.
ESG Analyst $111,729 Directs investments toward sustainable entities, reducing financial risk and capturing growth in green sectors.
Marketing Manager $103,968 Enhances brand reputation, customer loyalty and can command higher prices for sustainable products/services.
Policy Analyst $89,338 Shapes cost-effective and sustainable policies, driving government efficiency and effectiveness.
Supply Chain Manager $94,655 Optimises resource use, reduces waste and costs in the supply chain, enhancing profitability.
Sustainability Consultant $106,840 Streamlines operations for resource efficiency, reducing operational costs and enhancing resilience.
Sustainability Manager $104,206 Implements sustainable practices, cutting costs and meeting customer demand for sustainability.
Town Planner $94,715 Enhances land value, community appeal, attracting investment and fostering economic growth.
Urban Designer $101,000 Designs liveable spaces, increasing property values and attracting investment and tourism.

Salary statistics sourced from sites such as au.indeed.com. Updated: 20 July 2023.

The expanding field of 'green jobs' underscores the financial advantages of eco-conscious choices. As the need for specialists in sustainability increases, so does the potential for earnings. High-paying roles in environmental consulting, renewable energy engineering, and environmental science affirm that indeed, there is significant financial opportunity.

How Do I Become a Sustainability Specialist?

Green shoot pushing through moss

Becoming a sustainability specialist normally begins a solid foundation in a relevant undergraduate field. This might be environmental science, engineering, business, or a similar discipline.

Different areas of specialisation require varying skill sets, so it's important to tailor your educational path to your specific interests. For example, if you're interested in renewables, a renewable energy course, such as a degree in electrical engineering, would be suitable. If corporate sustainability is your goal, a business-related degree could be more relevant.

To further capitalise on your education or switch careers, consider postgraduate sustainability courses. Degrees like a Master of Sustainable Leadership or Master of Sustainable Energy provide advanced knowledge and skills, preparing you for leadership roles within the sustainability sector. These programs often cover strategic planning for sustainability, energy management, and policy, among other topics.

Obtaining practical experience is key. Look for opportunities to work on relevant projects, whether through internships, co-op programs, or entry-level positions. Through a combination of education, practical experience, and continued learning, you can build a rewarding sustainability career.