Environment, Resources and Sustainability

Save the planet (superhero outfit not included)

A student in the Environment, Resources and Sustainability program and the University of Waterloo.

Use insights from the natural, physical, and social sciences to help solve some of the world’s biggest environmental challenges — from water scarcity to pollution to loss of biodiversity.

Learn about conserving and restoring ecosystems, and explore issues in environmental governance. And thanks to our small classes, you’ll develop a real sense of community right from first year.

When you graduate, you can apply your knowledge in a growing number of fields, from green technology to ecological consulting to environmental law. And if you want an early start, you can also apply that knowledge to paid co-op work terms.

8Eight-month capstone research project in fourth year

BreifCaseChoose the regular or co-op system of study

12Field courses to give you hands-on experience


Admission requirements

Ontario students

  • Six Grade 12 U and/or M courses including any Grade 12 U English (a final grade of 70% is required)

Admission average: Low 80s

We recommend completing the Admission Information Form once you've applied.

Not an Ontario high school student?

Search our admission requirements. 


Tackling climate change on an individual level can feel daunting. Where do you start? What could you even do to make a difference? Ashoke, an Environment, Resources, and Sustainability student, is looking to make the fight against climate change feel more attainable by spreading the message that any positive action we each take – big or small – can create change. Read more of Ashoke's story on our Beyond Idea's website.

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Monthly topics include how to choose a university program, tips for a successful senior year of high school, and more.

Questions? Ask a student!

Contact an Environment student ambassador to learn about their experience.

Ask them questions such as why they chose their program, what the classes are like, and how you can get involved on campus.


EnvironmentOffered by the Faculty of Environment

bookAvailable as a major and minor

Graduation CapEarn a Bachelor of Environmental Studies degree


megaphone icon"ERS has always felt extremely broad and never focused on one aspect. This has kept me really engaged as I learn something different and unique each day. Professors are always happy to help so make sure to reach out when you need a hand!"Nickie, second-year Environment, Resources and Sustainability student

Ready to learn more?

Student stories

Visit our Beyond Ideas website to learn how students in Environment and Resources and Sustainability are using their studies to make an impact in the real world

Get career-relevant skills

Whether you choose the regular or co-op stream, you’ll get plenty of hands-on experience through case studies, field trips, and community projects. In your final year, you’ll work one-on-one with a professor on a research project of your choice.

30+ possible minors

In one of the most flexible programs at Waterloo, you can add one of more than 30 minors to your degree. Or do a double major. Or add an option. So go ahead: customize your degree to your interests!