Geochemists are interdisciplinary scientists who apply analytical and environmental chemistry to the study of geology soil science toxicology hydrology and botany. They have a natural curiosity about the earth and how the environment is affected by the earth’s composition and processes. According to the website geochemists study the gas and chemical composition of soil and water. They study mineral concentrations of soil for the mining industry and some work for petroleum companies. Some work for the U.S. Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agencies although hiring for government jobs is not as extensive as it used to be. Today the majority of geochemists work for environmental managements companies where they work on environmental remediation projects and urban planning. Much of the work geochemists do is in the field gathering samples and analyzing them on site so travel can be an important aspect of their jobs. In some instances they are called upon to respond to emergencies on weekends. However some of their work may be done in a lab. The website says that geochemists must have bachelor’s degrees but they major not only in chemistry and geology but also in a variety of subjects such as math physics and oceanography. Coursework in toxicology hydrology and sedimentology are also helpful for those who are considering a job in geochemistry. Individuals who aspire to academic or research positions will need to have a Ph.D. but most jobs in industry or environmental management companies do not require an advanced degree. According to the website entry level geochemists earn approximately $37000 annually but the overall the average annual salary is approximately $68000. However experienced geochemists can earn up to $134000 a year.

Education Required: Bachelor's Degree
Avg Salary: $85500
High Salary: $134000
Low Salary: $37000
Tasks: Collects and analyzes samples.
Studies chemical elements in rocks and minerals.
Analyzes the movement of chemicals into soil and water systems.
Monitors developments in the earth's composition.
Also Called: Scientist
Environmental Scientist
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