In this article, we will look at 16 $100K jobs no one wants. If you want to skip our detailed industrial analysis of global waste management, head straight to the 5 $100K Jobs No One Wants.
We often hear about the most popular and in-demand jobs with high salaries and respect those professions’ command over our admiration. For example, being an astronaut is considered one of the coolest jobs in the world whereas the highest demanded job in the world is that of a nurse practitioner. Not only do these jobs pay well but are also amongst the most respected professions in the world. However, concealed in the shadows, lie jobs that often remain vacant, shunned by most because of either their challenging nature, societal stigma, or lack of appeal.
Most of the jobs on our list of $100K jobs no one wants fall under the industry of waste management. This is because the industry heavily relies on the physically demanding, hazardous, and often unpleasant nature of waste-handling jobs. Not only are these jobs left vacant but those who do choose them do so out of necessity rather than preference. Despite these realities, the industry shows positive signs of growth.
According to Allied Market Research, the global waste management market was valued at $1,612 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach $2,483 billion by 2030, with a CAGR of 3.4% from 2021 to 2030. This market includes the collection, transportation, and disposal of different waste types like solid, liquid, and gas, across municipal, industrial, and hazardous waste sectors.
The market’s growth is primarily driven by government initiatives to combat illegal dumping and the adoption of Waste-to-Energy (WTE) incineration and recycling techniques. The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) which was implemented by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), plays a crucial role in managing hazardous and nonhazardous waste. Moreover, the surge in global population and industrialization, particularly in emerging economies like India, China, and Taiwan, has contributed to increased waste generation globally.
As sustainability has taken over every industry around the world, the industry of waste management was no exception.
Waste Management, Inc (NYSE:WM) is leading the charge in sustainable waste management, as it is tackling environmental challenges head-on. With approximately 125 million tons of waste under its stewardship annually, the company operates 255 active landfill sites across the US and Canada and implements innovative practices to minimize environmental impact. Waste Management, Inc (NYSE:WM)’s groundbreaking initiatives include the conversion of landfill gas into renewable electricity and fuel, with 144 active sites in their landfill gas-to-energy program, and plans to invest $825 million by 2026 in expanding this effort.
According to their sustainability report of 2022, the investment by Waste Management, Inc (NYSE:WM) aims to capture 65% of landfill gas for beneficial reuse, which is essentially a 600% increase at WM-owned RNG plants that is capable of powering the equivalent of 1 million North American homes.
One of the least favored jobs we came across during our research was that of a sewage inspector. Owing to unpleasant and unsanitary working conditions and the fact that they have to inevitably deal with the worst smells and physically torturous tasks in cramped, dirty spaces, it is one of the high paying jobs that no one wants to do. However, as industries are being revolutionized by Ai and automation, the jobs for sanitation and sewage have also been automated.
Veolia Water Technologies, a water division of Veolia Environnement S.A (OTC:VE) has largely streamlined jobs for sewage inspectors by leveraging advanced technologies and wastewater treatment solutions. Through their expertise in wastewater treatment, Veolia helps municipalities and industrial facilities meet stringent environmental regulations while optimizing economic goals.
One key aspect of Veolia Environment S.A (OTC:VE)’s approach is the implementation of automated systems and processes that reduce the need for manual inspection and intervention. These automated systems can monitor and control different components of wastewater treatment like the removal of pollutants and the quality of effluent. By automating routine tasks and incorporating real-time data analytics, Veolia Water Technologies enables sewage inspectors to focus on more complex and strategic aspects of their roles, such as troubleshooting and system optimization.
In doing so, Veolia Environment S.A (OTC:VE) contributes to a safer and more efficient working environment for sewage inspectors while ensuring that wastewater treatment facilities consistently meet regulatory requirements.
Apart from their automation strategies, their financials have been equally impressive. In their half year results for 2023, Veolia Environment S.A (OTC:VE) achieved strong financial performance, with revenue reaching approximately $24,408 million with a growth of 14.2% YoY. Veolia Environment S.A (OTC:VE)’s EBITDA rose to approximately $3,394 million which indicated a fair organic growth rate of 8.2%. Veolia Environment S.A (OTC:VE)’s current net income grew by 18.7% and reached $704 million, approximately.
Copyright: meinzahn / 123RF Stock Photo
For our list of $100K jobs no one wants to do, we conducted extensive research on the internet to compile a list. We looked up the most unusual jobs that were either dirty, socially looked down upon, highly dangerous or just very difficult. Our sources included platforms like Reddit and Indeed.com. We curated the list based on various percentile classes of average salaries. So the list is not necessarily wholly based on absolute averages. For data on salaries, we utilized the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Indeed.com, and ERI to ensure the accuracy and reliability of our article.
Here’s the list of $100K jobs no one wants
16. Solid Waste Manager
A solid waste manager oversees the collection, transportation, and disposal of solid waste, such as household garbage and recycling. They manage waste disposal facilities, recycling programs, and waste collection services. The downside of the job is that it can involve dealing with unpleasant odors and unsanitary conditions, especially when overseeing waste collection or disposal facilities. Aptim Corp pays an annual salary of $136,935 to its solid waste managers on average.
15. Tool Pushers
Tool pushers are responsible for managing drilling operations while also ensuring safety protocols, and handling complex equipment. The job entails long hours, often in remote and harsh environments, leading to extended periods away from home and family. The pressure to meet production targets and maintain safety standards can be overwhelming, making it a mentally and physically taxing profession. Additionally, the cyclical nature of the industry can result in job instability, further dissuading potential candidates. According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a Toolpusher is $173,519 per year. It is one of the $100K jobs that nobody wants to do.
14. Railroad Engineers
Railroad engineering jobs have long, irregular hours, extensive time away from home, with physically demanding work in all weather conditions. With exposure to hazards and intense focus requirements, the job is both emotionally and mentally taxing. The salary range usually falls between $86,832 and $107,508 for railroad engineers in the US.
The job of a roughneck in the oil and gas industry is often physically grueling which involves heavy lifting, long hours, and exposure to harsh weather conditions. It also comes with a high risk of accidents and injuries. It is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. It is also one of the $100K jobs without a degree. The 75th percentile salary for the role is $110,000.
12. Mine Manager
The role of a mine manager often requires living in remote areas while dealing with volatile commodity markets, and managing a high-stress work environment. These factors can deter anyone from pursuing this job. The median salary of a mine manager in the US is $144,882. It is one of the $100K jobs no one wants.
11. Landfill Gas Operator
Landfill gas operators work in unpleasant conditions as they have to manage and maintain gas extraction systems at landfills. The job not only exposes one to noxious odors and extreme weather but also a number of potential health risks. The average salary of landfill gas operators in the US is $95,413 per year.
10. Crab Fishermen
First, it involves physically demanding and dangerous work. Fishermen endure backbreaking labor, heavy equipment, and the constant risk of injury or even death in treacherous sea conditions. Long hours of hard work often lead to exhaustion and physical strain. Additionally, the isolation from family and friends during extended fishing trips can strain personal relationships. The unpredictable nature of crab populations and market prices can make it financially unstable, adding to the stress.
Some fishermen have quoted earning as high as $150,000 to $170,000 per year. Even though their jobs are mostly seasonal, they usually earn around $50,000 for the work of 3-4 months.
9. Underwater Welder
The welders must work in an underwater environment, where they frequently face the risk of drowning, hypothermia, and decompression sickness. The job demands specialized training, equipment, and certifications which also cause issues of accessibility when compared to traditional welding. Any job that is this physically demanding and isolated can be considered mentally and physically exhausting. It is one of the high-paying jobs nobody wants.
Underwater welders with a specialization in saturated diving can expect to earn as much as $300,000 per year.
8. Truck Driver
Long hours on the road often mean extended periods away from family and loved ones, which can strain personal relationships. Truck driving also involves a sedentary lifestyle which can lead to health concerns. Safety is also a significant concern for many, as truck drivers face risks on the road. Moreover, the looming threat of automation raises questions about job security in the future. It is one of the $100K jobs nobody wants without a degree.
7. Elevator Installers and Repairers
One major concern for not wanting this job is claustrophobia, as the job often involves working in tight and confined spaces within elevator shafts. Hence, if one fears closed spaces, this job will be a big no for me. Moreover, exposure to heights and the necessity for specialized technical skills can collectively contribute to the job’s unattractiveness for some people. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), elevator repairers and installers earn a median annual wage of $99,000.
The downside of plumbing jobs is that it involve physically demanding skills and sometimes dirty work, which can be unappealing to many. Moreover, there’s also a societal bias that tends to value white-collar professions over skilled trades. It can also be the fact that plumbing often requires dealing with emergencies and working irregular hours, which can disrupt the work-life balance. However, it is also one of the part-time retirement jobs that pay well.
The highest average salary of a journeyman plumber in the United States is $99,500.
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Disclosure: None. 16 $100K Jobs No One Wants is originally published on Insider Monkey.