How to Become an Energy Engineer

How to Become an Energy Engineer

Energy engineers are tasked with the production of high quality and cost-effective energy. They employ environment friendly processes in the extraction of energy from natural resources such as oil and gas or renewable sources like water, wind and solar. Your love for science, technology and innovation can lead you to this profession.

What do Energy Engineers do?

Energy engineers extract energy from several sources including;

  • Wind power
  • Sunlight
  • Biomass
  • Water
  • Gas and oil

The job of energy engineers vary with the area of employment. In general, they have common duties that include;

  • Safeguarding the environment during energy production
  • Researching and identifying new energy generation sites
  • Overseeing energy production such as oil and gas drilling
  • Finding efficient equipment for production, distribution and consumption of energy
  • Working with architects to design improved heating and cooling systems in homes and offices.
  • Analyzing industrial and domestic energy consumption.

Work Environment

Energy engineers work from either an office or field site. Work in an office setup normally starts at 9am and ends at 5pm, Monday through Friday. At generation sites, work is based on a shift system that involves working in the evening and weekends.

During energy extraction, engineers are required to wear helmets and steel-toed boots for protection against dirt and harmful chemicals.


The average annual pay of energy engineers in various job levels is;

Job level

Annual pay

Starting engineers

£20,000 to £30,000

Experienced engineers

£35,000 to £60,000

Senior engineers


Source: National Careers Service

Entry Requirements

To qualify as an energy engineer, you must earn a bachelor’s degree in any of these engineering fields;

  • Energy engineering
  • Electrical and mechanical engineering
  • Environmental engineering
  • Bio systems engineering
  • Petroleum or mining engineering
  • Civil engineering

To be able to pursue an engineering degree you need;

  • Five GCSEs (A-C)
  • Three A levels -- math and a science included.

For more information on the admission requirements for various universities visit Universities and Colleges Admission Services.

Training and Development

As an energy engineers, your competence will increase as you continue work. To grow your career and move a step ahead, you can;

  • Pursue a master’s or PhD degree in energy or research engineering
  • Join an engineering professional body, such as the Energy Institute and the Engineering Council.
  • Apply for Chartered Engineer status from the Engineering Council.

Because technology is constantly developing and changing, you can join the Institute of Engineering and Technology to pursue short courses that can help to upgrade your skills and knowledge.

Skills, Interests and Abilities

Energy engineers need the following skills to be successful;

  • An interest in science and technology
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Good project and management skills
  • Good teamwork skills
  • Good planning and communication skills
  • The ability to face the unexpected.

Employment Prospects

As a qualified energy engineer you are likely to work in;

  • Energy productions plants
  • Oil and gas firms
  • Research centers
  • Universities
  • Property development firms

After gaining vast work experience and obtaining higher qualifications, no one can stop you from moving into planning, policy development or freelance consultancy.

The following websites can help you find a job;

The National Careers Service projects that a minimum of 180,000 jobs will be available in the energy sector between 2014 and 2020.

Energy demand is increasing globally. To meet this demand while safeguarding the environment, more energy engineers will be required. This means, if you secure the required qualifications, you won’t miss a job.


Image sourced from Shutterstock.