Hydrologist | Selby College
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Hydrologists study the impact of rainfall, rivers and waterways on the environment. They also look at sustainable ways to use water.

Potential salary

£22,500 to £46,000

Employment by 2024


Working hours

38 to 45 a week

  • maths knowledge
  • knowledge of engineering science and technology
  • analytical thinking skills
  • knowledge of geography
  • science skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of physics
  • excellent written communication skills
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • measuring river flows and the amount of water above and below ground
  • investigating the causes and impact of flooding and drought
  • modelling rainfall patterns under different climate conditions
  • studying snowfall, glaciers and ice formation
  • analysing water samples for chemicals and pollutants
  • assessing water use in agriculture and industry
  • working on engineering projects like dams, drainage and flood defences
  • advising policy makers on sustainable water use
  • collecting data from flood events to improve forecasting and risk management

You could work in an office, in a laboratory or in the countryside.

Your working environment may be outdoors in all weathers.

You could become a senior hydrologist, co-ordinating a team of researchers, hydrologists and engineers.

You might also work as a consultant, advising government departments and businesses on sustainable water use, civil hydro-engineering projects or flood risk management.

You can discover more about careers in hydrology from the British Hydrological Society and The Geological Society.

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