Environmental Engineering at UNBC and UBC


The joint UNBC/UBC BASc in Environmental Engineering features all aspects of environmental engineering with a focus on sustainable development, drinking water delivery to northern communities, wastewater management, and remediation and reclamation of resource extraction sites. 

Environmental and ecological problems are an increasing concern for all Canadians particularly in the resource-rich northern portion of British Columbia. The concerns are especially acute due to a primarily resource-based economy, which depends on forestry, mining, oil and gas, and fisheries. Further, the northern economy generates a significant portion of British Columbia’s primary wealth and feeds provincial economic growth. UNBC offers an Environmental Engineering degree that integrates basic science with modern engineering practices. Our graduates are prepared to take on challenges facing modern society, including the protection of society from adverse environmental factors, protection of environments from potentially detrimental effects of natural and human activities, water, air, and soil pollution control, solid waste management and contaminated site remediation. Modern issues require highly skilled engineers with a solid background in environmental engineering, strong communication skills, and the ability to work across disciplinary boundaries. This program prepares graduates for a wide range of employment opportunities where the technical expertise and problem-solving skills of engineers are needed in conjunction with a strong awareness and understanding of environmental issues and problems.

Engineering Labs at UNBC

UNBC students Rika Rao and Jeffrey Watson tour the Engineering Materials Lab and Hydrology Lab.

Hydrology Lab tour

Civil and environmental engineering students use the Hydrology Lab to understand fluid mechanics. The lab has the equipment to study concepts such as fluid properties, variation of pressure in a fluid, hydrostatic forces, buoyancy, kinematics of flow and flow in closed conduits. Environmental engineers further study water quality criteria and standards, treatment techniques and systems for surface water and groundwater sources as well as wastewater collection and wastewater treatment systems.

Degree Overview

  • 9 academic semesters - years 1 and 2 at UNBC, years 3 and 4 at UBC, year 4.5 at UNBC
  • Optional co-operative work terms
  • 4.5 years
  • Courses are taught through a variety of methods including group learning, team teaching, and the use of design suites


The UNBC/UBC program is accredited by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board (2017) and our graduates are eligible for registration as Professional Engineers (PEng) and have access to great career opportunities.

Job Opportunities

Environmental Engineering graduates are critical to the growing northern and Canadian economy. The need to replace retiring engineers as they exit the workforce is growing, as the average age of civil engineers in B.C. is 50 years old, greater than in any other province. Engineers Canada projects an average of 667 job openings per year in British Columbia from 2015-2019 and continued high demand for the next decade.

Co-operative Education

UNBC offers Environmental Engineering students optional co-op work terms. For more information visit the Co-operative Education page.

Environmental Engineering at UNBC