Best Waste management careers in the USA

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The waste management sector is a growing area of interest because the world produces more waste than ever. It is a growing and great industry if you want to make a career in helping the environment.

It seems that a waste management career is not getting the attention that it deserves. Many people are unaware of this type of career or see it as a job that only requires you to drive a truck. While you can call it a career, it is a multidisciplinary field that touches on various industries such as technology, the environment, and health.

The waste management industry is a key industry for the future of our planet. We have so much waste that it is a challenge to move away from our waste generation culture. 

However, by providing the proper education and training to those in the waste management industry, we can ensure a bright future for our planet.

The waste management career field in the USA

The USA is a large country, and there are almost 1.5 million waste management workers in the USA. The waste management industry is a very important part of the USA’s economy because it helps keep the environment safe. It is so important to the USA because it serves several important purposes that help the economy.

When you think about careers in waste management, you probably think about trash, recycling, and the environment. Waste management careers include professionals who deal with waste products’ prevention, reduction, reuse, and recycling. 

Waste management careers can take in a lot of different areas. For example, hazardous waste management careers deal with the handling and treatment of hazardous waste, which can be toxic or radioactive. 

Landfill management careers deal with waste placement and safety, and recycling careers deal with creating new products from previously used products.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports says that almost 1 million jobs were available in the waste management industry as of 2015, with 1 in every 20 jobs in the United States falling under waste management. Workers who want to enter the waste management field can earn anywhere from $12 to $20 per hour, depending on their experience level.

What are the most common waste management careers

Trash management occupations might focus on air, water, or soil pollution, waste generated by companies, or government agency controls of such industries. 

Those interested in the sector have a wide range of options, as do the qualifications needed for various sorts of work. Refuse collectors, landfill employees, and assistants to trash industry specialists can all be found for those who prefer working outside and don’t want to go to college. 

Having a college education opens up a wider range of possibilities. Some sectors, such as landfills and wastewater treatment plants, necessitate the use of equipment operators. 

Technicians that collect waste samples and conduct environmental research are employed at every stage of waste treatment. Engineers and scientists are working together to enhance waste management systems while keeping an eye on the environmental and human impact.

There are employment prospects with private waste management companies and smaller, independent collectors, transporters, and processors. Chemical, food and metals businesses employ in-house workers to handle large amounts of trash. 

Engineering consulting organizations and emergency response companies are some of the other employers, in addition to state and regional EPA agencies.

There is still plenty of employment in the public sector for waste management professionals, but many of those positions will go to private companies as the trend is toward privatization. 

The Environmental Research and Education Foundation surveyed that more than half of the 27,000 waste management businesses in the United States are privately owned. This business segment was responsible for about 76 percent of the $43.3 billion in sales. This data shows that businesses in the private sector employ 41,1% of people who work in solid waste management.

U.S. waste management careers


Large industrial organizations and others who create a lot of garbage may employ in-house environmental staff to maintain compliance. Large companies may employ environmental scientists, engineers, technicians, lawyers, and communicators, and smaller firms may have one or two employees or hire consultants. 

Waste management and compliance have cost in the billions of dollars every year. Good PR, expensive disposal costs, growing non-compliance costs, including the prospect of lawsuits, and other factors need attention in current waste-management operations and efforts in establishing new procedures and tactics.


The tasks include advising businesses on solid or hazardous waste problems, building waste-management strategies and supply staff to implement them, and providing routine management monitoring and consulting. 

Large consulting firms have testing and lab services. In the U.S., there are 100 big environmental consulting businesses and hundreds of smaller ones, including several one-person enterprises.


The EPA employs solid and hazardous waste specialists and professionals. Forest services, National Park services and Wildlife services need waste management experts. The government hires private waste management consultants and businesses for some initiatives, including cleaning up government-owned hazardous waste sites.

State and local

State regulation and inspection authorities require EPA scientists, engineers, technicians, and other professionals like municipal public works administrators, engineers, technicians, and workers are some of the careers. Local governments handle municipal solid waste, and local states, counties, and municipalities manage more hazardous waste.

If you’re into saving the environment, becoming a waste management professional can be a great career choice. 

You can be a successful waste manager if you have the right equipment. However, having the proper education is still a good idea, especially if you want a management position. Waste management is one of the most obvious services people think about when discussing jobs in the environmental sector. 

Many waste management jobs exist in fields such as solid waste management and recycling. These jobs have been on the rise worldwide, and most job estimates predict that the growth will continue. 

This is because the world’s population is increasing, which means more people use more resources. The world is also becoming more aware of the effects of plastic on the environment, which means people are looking for better ways to recycle and reduce their waste footprint. 

The future of waste management jobs looks bright. The industry’s growth also depends on the countries that need waste management professionals. In the future, the waste management industry will continue to grow, and the number of jobs in this field will continue to increase.