Geoscientists held about 28,000 jobs in the U.S in 2002 and many more individuals held environmental science and geoscience faculty positions in colleges and universities. Among geoscientists, 30 percent were employed in architectural, engineering, and related services, and 15 percent worked for oil and gas extraction companies. In 2002, the Federal Government employed about 3,000 geoscientists, including geologists, geophysicists, and oceanographers, mostly within the U.S. Department of the Interior for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and within the U.S. Department of Defense. Another 3,400 worked for State agencies, such as State geological surveys and State departments of conservation. Nearly 3 percent of geoscientists were self-employed, most as consultants to industry or government.
(Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Environmental Scientists and Geoscientists)