What's the difference between renewable energy and environmental resources engineering?

Oregon Tech offers renewable energy engineering and Humboldt State offers environmental resources engineering. When I look at the differences between these 2, I couldn't tell so what should I do? I'm a senior in highschool with a 3.6 GPA

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  • 7 years ago
    Best Answer

    Oregon tech is a masters degree. Humboldt is a bachelors. The humboldt state program is a more traditional "civil" engineering program, which is sort of parallel to environmental engineering. This is probably the safe bet, as these jobs are always in demand. The civil/environmental/water resource engineer does a variety of work and large and small projects. Treatment plants design, sewer line design, water line design, levee design, floodway studies, water quality studies (streams, lakes, rivers, industrial discharge water quality, etc...). Also, alot of report preparation, dealings with the EPA on almost all projects, public meetings explaining projects, drainage studies, storm drain design, environmental clean-ups... The list goes on...

    As for the Oregon tech program, it seems more like a 'green' energy engineering program. I only briefly looked at the curriculum, bit it appears that they teach the fundamentals of todays renewable energy markets, and also emphasize research into those technologies. This type of engineering is more volatile and risky from a career standpoint, as those companies who engineer renewable energy are often start-ups, government subsidized, and so forth... With the price of copper so high now, the wind energy market is dying fast, since it is effectively impossible to cost effectively use wind power now... Same with solar, the rare earth minerals needed to produce the panels are in short supply, and getting more and more expensive, and on top of that, I belive the U.S. has only one location where such minerals are mined, the rest are controlled by the Chinese overseas... Thats worth checking into, but I believe that to be the case currently. At any rate, perhaps the graduates from Oregon Tech will engineer new renewable energy sources that we haven't heard of yet... That seems like the type of program that is... Highly research and innovation based. So a career in that line of work you have to understand the emerging technologies, strength of the markets, and the politics that usually go hand in hand with renewable energy technologies...

    Both are ABET accredited engineering degrees, so you'll be able to become professionally licensed once you complete your degree... That is a good thing, and you'll want to avoid a program that isn't accredited.

    Good luck.

  • 4 years ago

    There is no difference. By definition, if an energy source is renewable it is inexhaustible. Examples are solar, wind, tidal, waves.

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