Thursday, June 12, 2008

Job search and the specific field of environmental jobs.

As times flies, people are asking why haven't you got a job? I guess I am looking for THE JOB.

As I browsed and browsed the net, I put down lists of jobs but with no inner conviction which ones to apply until one night, I felt that yes! Though the Hitachi Environmental Engineer job does not fulfill all my criteria of a perfect job I want, it is the closest one I would desire at the moment.

I was choosing between 2 types of jobs which also more of less illustrated my environmental beliefs:
1. Work with existing companies to help "green" their operations or design "eco-friendly" products. An idea job in the long term would be one like this by Environmental Defense" - environmental sustainability executive

2. Work with renewable energy or green areas such as waste treatment.

Actually, I made the choice about 10 years ago when I worked on my life plan - " To create product that is like Virgin, across many areas but standing for 'value for money' and 'eco friendly'

The difficulty in choice probably came about as I am not equipped with the business, operation management knowledge combined with relevant "eco knowledge" such as life cycle analysis and sustainability analysis; while at the same time, I want to make use of my university education in environmental engineering which basically is dealing with end of pipe treatment methods which as I learnt by now, is not the solution to the world.

I still remember that illumination came to me when I attended Prof Bob's class on something like an introduction into environmental technologies. Week by week, we learnt about the various waste treatment technologies such as scrubbing, membrane, incineration etc. Suddenly, it just hit me - All these technologies just serve to concentrate all the waste into a smaller volume. At the end of the day, we have to deal with the remaining waste ( often concentrated and more toxic). In a simple analogy, it would be ash remaining after incineration.

As such, if I can't land a job in the first type of area - environmental sustainability excutive, my priority in the second area would be in renewables rather than waste treatment such as in companies such as Hyflux. Of course this means that I will not get to apply basically anything that I learnt in my course and that actually, I am pretty ill-equipped in terms of skills for my preferred job.

In second area, the one that would marry my studies and yet play a bigger role in "renewables" would be deriving landfill gas as fuel.

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