Marine geologists spend much time at sea researching ocean features and assisting with oil exploration. This work can be physically demanding and requires a lot of travel.
Salaries for marine geochemists vary significantly, depending on their employment sector. Petroleum and mineral resource companies pay the highest wages for new hires.
Oil and Gas Exploration
Oil and gas exploration is the most common career path for marine geochemists. This involves studying the geology of an area to discover areas that contain hydrocarbons and determining where they should be drilled.
Petroleum is formed by burying and cooking organic matter, such as plant and animal remains, trapped in sedimentary rocks for millions of years. The process is similar to baking in the oven: heat and pressure cook the material until it becomes liquid.
Marine geochemists travel to different locations worldwide and use specialized equipment. They also need to have mechanical proficiency so they can use a variety of tools.
Oil and gas production has a lot of risks and can affect ecosystems in some of the most remote areas on Earth. As a result, marine geochemists need to consider their environmental impact when choosing a career path.
Environmental and Government Sectors
Besides oil and gas extraction, the environmental and government sectors are the most common career path for marine geochemists. These areas have a strong need for expertise in oceanography and geology.
You can find opportunities to work with governmental agencies, universities, and companies in these sectors. Many of these jobs require a higher education degree but also allow you to develop your skills through research and fieldwork.
Governments have traditionally been seen as being in charge of environmental policy, with a particular emphasis on safeguarding the natural environment and its resources. However, it is becoming more and more evident that a comprehensive project that delicately incorporates the roles, duties, and capabilities of various players would result in an environmental policy that is effective.
Private consulting is the most common career path for marine geochemists, and it can be a rewarding way to make money while helping solve the world’s biggest environmental problems. They can work for mineral companies, government agencies, oil companies, or ecological research institutes.
As a marine geochemist, you’ll conduct scientific studies to determine the chemical composition of seawater and how it affects ocean ecosystems. You’ll also study how the ocean interacts with climate change and other environmental factors.
You’ll also have to consider human activities’ impact on the environment, including pollution, and how that impacts the natural cycles of minerals, water, and energy. This can be a challenging but rewarding career, and you’ll have the chance to travel and explore new areas.
Education is one of the most common career paths for marine geochemists. They can pursue a bachelor’s degree in marine science or geology, and some choose to earn a master’s or doctoral degree for increased job opportunities and earning potential.
A solid educational background in geology and a broad interest in the ocean is essential to becoming a marine geochemist. These scientists study various topics, such as the movement of tectonic plates beneath the sea floor, the mineral content of silt and rock to pinpoint oil wells, or how underwater volcanoes affect life in the surface world.
Communication, leadership, and analytical thinking skills are also necessary for marine geologists to succeed. They use these skills in their everyday work, which involves working as part of a team and communicating with clients and government officials. They also advise business owners and students on their research projects, publish articles about their findings, and present at conferences.