Air Force Job: 4B0X1 Bioenvironmental Engineering

This job ensures Air Force activities don't negatively affect the environment

Senior Airman Nicholas Johnson and Staff Sgt. Lewis Carter and Airman 1st Class Matthew Ohara apply the lessons they learned during Integrated Response Training Feb. 28, 2013 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. Integrated Base Response Training is a five day-long workshop that provides emergency responders with an opportunity to employ Homeland Defense and expeditionary detection equipment in realistic scenarios. Johnson and Carter are bioenvironmental engineers assigned to the 99th Civil Engineer Squadron and Ohara is an emergency management journeyman assigned to the 99th CES.
••• U.S. Air Force photo / Staff Sgt. William P. Coleman

Bioenvironmental engineering specialists in the Air Force are tasked with reducing health hazards for Air Force personnel and their work environments. This can mean detecting radioactive materials, checking for pollutants in drinking water, and ensuring safe industrial hygiene conditions.

Essentially, these airmen make sure the environment is not adversely affected by the Air Force or its activities. 

This job is categorized as Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC) 4B0X1

Duties of Air Force Bioenvironmental Engineers

These airmen manage bioenvironmental engineering activities in the fields of industrial hygiene, occupational health, radiological health and environmental protection to ensure healthful working conditions. 

This can include evaluating and conducting internal inspections to ensure coverage of activities assigned to bioenvironmental engineering, and providing guidance and supervision in selecting protective equipment, and monitoring its use in industrial environments.

Airmen in this job also review plans, work orders, contracts and specifications for compliance with environmental and occupational health directives, and serve on committees for occupational health, environmental protection, and medical readiness matters.

Another part of this role involves evaluating drinking water quality, swimming pools and public bathing areas. They also evaluate domestic waste treatment and solid waste disposal systems and procedures, identifying potential pollution sources.

They'll use that knowledge to conducts water pollution surveillance programs. They also investigate chemical spills and other environmental releases, collect samples and coordinate necessary corrective actions with state, federal and local officials.

In addition, these airmen advise on health hazards and protective measures for exposed populations and emergency response personnel. They also advise on decontamination procedures for medical personnel, patients, equipment and medical facilities. And they provide training for medical personnel, advice and guidance for training non-medical personnel

Training for AFSC 4B0X1

These airmen need to have knowledge of basic and applied mathematics, basic chemistry, physics and computer usage, industrial hygiene, community environmental surveillance, occupational health, radiological health, environmental protection, medical administration and bioenvironmental engineering aspects of medical readiness.

To be successful in this job, airmen need to be able to wear protective suits without experiencing claustrophobia, and be able to carry heavy equipment at the same time.

Following basic training and Airmen's Week, these airmen will spend 68 days in technical training at Wright Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio. They'll take the basic bioenvironmental engineering specialist course and receive training in bioenvironmental engineering evaluations and surveys. 

These airmen will also learn to perform and supervise industrial hygiene, occupational health, environmental protection, medical readiness and radiological health surveys to include the preparation of all related correspondence, reports, and charts. And they'll learn to manage industrial hygiene, community environmental surveillance and radiological health programs.

Qualifying for AFSC 4B0X1

Normal color vision is required for this job, and you need to be qualified to operate government vehicles. 

You need a composite score of at least 49 on the general (G) section of the Air Force Qualification Area of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) tests.