Sunday, April 06, 2008

Geologist salaries up 35% in 3 years

My copy of AAPG Explorer arrived on Friday with a report that geologist's salaries increased on average, 9.45% last year, resulting in an unprecendented 3-year rise of 35%.

I've blogged in recent weeks about the price of oil, gold, copper, coal, and some rarer minerals. The global demand for energy and mineral resources is pushing a corresponding demand for geologists who can explore for and develop these deposits.

We've also had 40+ geology departments shut down in U.S. colleges in the past decade or so. However, despite that, enrollments have been moderately stable in recent years.

2007 Geological Salary Survey (AAPG)

0-2 $ 95,000 $ 82,800 $ 58,000
3-5 145,000 107,800 80,000
6-9 153,000 121,100 99,000
10-14 155,000 119,800 100,000
15-19 185,000 151,600 101,000
20-24 260,000 167,400 134,000
25+ 200,000 162,800 130,000


  1. Anonymous9:14 PM

    Lee - I think it is very important to note that this survey seem to only apply to geoscientists in the "extractive" industries NOT all "Geologist(s)" as you post title would indicate. You'd be hard pressed to find a minimum starting salary of $58k for a geologist with 0-2 years experience in the geotechnical or environmental consulting industries, not to mention at a government-funded agency like a state survey such as yours. Thanks.

  2. You're right. The AAPG salary survey is for jobs in the oil industry. Somewhere along the line though, high salaries in the oil and mining sectors ripple through (trickle down?) the whole profession, albeit not at the same levels.

    And after spending three years in Texas in the oil industry, I'm not ready to go back, even if it might mean 50% or more increase in salary.