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How to become an air quality specialist?

We often come across news articles describing the air quality in certain parts of the world as either ‘good’ or ‘bad’. The quality of air refers to the amount of pollutants present in the atmosphere. And it is the job of the air quality specialists to monitor air pollution and report it. Air quality specialists work for government and private agencies. They analyse the air we breathe to check if the air is safe and free of pollutants. Vigorous monitoring helps in altering people and initiating actions in case of extreme pollution. So if you want to help build sustainable, livable cities and contribute towards a low-carbon economy, then air quality assessment could be the right career option for you.

How it works

Air quality specialists test air samples from various environments and determine whether it meets the set standards. Monitoring air quality is also significant as policy makers can frame policies to curb air pollution and for the environment experts to understand the impact of policy changes. Real-time monitoring plays a key role in calculating air quality index (AQI) to issue health advisories as well as from action plans to meet standards.

Required skills

  • Analytical skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Good communication skills to simplify technical documents
  • Awareness of occupational safety and health issues
  • Interest in preserving the environment


In India, air quality specialists work with the Central Pollution Control Board, State pollution control boards, pollution control committees, and National Environmental Engineering Research Institute in cities. Air quality specialists are also needed by non-government agencies and action groups working to reduce air pollution.

What to study?

If you are interested in pursuing a career as an air quality specialist, a degree in environmental engineering – Bachelors of Technology (B.Tech) is a must. A Bachelors (B.Sc) and a Masters (M.Sc) in Environmental Science will also be helpful.


  • Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur. B.Tech in Environmental Engineering.
  • Ch BP Government Engineering College, New Delhi: B.Tech in Environmental Engineering.
  • Banaras Hindu University: M.Sc in Environmental Science (Environmental Technology)
  • Garware Institute of Development University of Mumbai: M.Sc in Sustainable Development and Environment Management.
  • Savitribai Phule University, Pune: M.Sc in Environmental Sciences.
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi: M.Sc in Environmental Sciences.


Picture Credit : Google

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