Environmental engineering is the integration of science and engineering principles to improve the natural environment, to provide healthy water, air, and land for human habitation and for other organisms, and to clean up pollution sites. Environmental engineering can also be described as a branch of applied science and technology that address the issue of energy preservation, production asset and control of waste from human and animal activities. Furthermore, it is concerned with finding plausible solutions in the field of public health, such as waterborne diseases, implementing law which promote adequate sanitation in urban, rural and recreational areas. It involves waste water management and air pollution control, recycling, waste disposal, radiation protection, industrial hygiene, environmental sustainability, and public health issues as well as a knowledge of environmental engineering law. It also includes studies on the environmental impact of proposed construction projects.

Environmental engineers study the effect of technological advances on the environment. To do so, they conduct hazardous-waste management studies to evaluate the significance of such hazards, advise on treatment and containment, and develop regulations to prevent mishaps. Environmental engineers also design municipal water supply and industrial wastewater treatment systems as well as address local and worldwide environmental issues such as the effects of acid rain, global warming, ozone depletion, water pollution and air pollution from automobile exhausts and industrial sources.

Environmental “civil” engineers focus on hydrology, water resources management, bioremediation, and water treatment plant design. Environmental “chemical” engineers, on the other hand, focus on environmental chemistry, advanced air and water treatment technologies and separation processes.

Additionally, engineers are more frequently obtaining specialized training in law and are utilizing their technical expertise in the practices of environmental engineering law.