Back-End Software Engineer

With world attention on both the environment and the economy, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is where policymakers and business leaders turn for win-win solutions. By focusing on strong science, uncommon partnerships and market-based approaches, we tackle urgent threats with practical solutions. We are one of the world’s largest environmental organizations, with more than two million members and a staff of over 700 scientists, economists, policy experts, and other professionals around the world. We operate in 22 geographies with unique projects running across four programs. You will be part of a vibrant workplace that welcomes diverse perspectives, talents and contributions, where innovation and results are a way of life.


EDF envisions a world in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected to the environmental challenges we face and are engaged in creating durable, equitable solutions. We seek talented candidates who share our Core Values of Respect, Results, Innovation, Optimism, and Integrity, and support our Commitment to Diversity.  

You are applying for a job with MethaneSAT LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Environmental Defense Fund.


The location for this position can be flexible in the United States including the option to work remotely from home. 


MethaneSAT, LLC, an affiliate of Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is launching a new, high performance, purpose-built satellite—MethaneSAT—to map and measure oil and gas methane emissions worldwide, with the potential to assess emissions from the full range of man-made sources. The satellite will enable us to gather methane emissions data on a global scale and with data from other sources, locate and quantify these emissions.  Data from MethaneSAT will help EDF reduce methane emissions by 45% by 2025 and holds the potential to help reduce the temperature of our planet by as much 0.5 degrees C by the end of the century.  This could be the most impactful environmental project yet conceived.


Overall Function


With current estimates at 3000 cores per day, the Data Platform will handle the constant stream of data it receives from MethaneSAT. The system will apply a series of algorithms to each scene capture that turn a raw stream of bytes into detailed insights. The system will handle automated and manual Q/C, reprioritization, scene reprocessing and the creation of processing metrics and logs for engineers and analysts.  A flexible, multi-cloud solution is required that is fault tolerant, handles preemption of resources and extensible is essential for MethaneSAT to deliver timely and accurate information to regulators, policymakers and activists worldwide.


The Back-End Software Engineer will be critical in the design, build and implementation of the Data Platform processing, serving and storage infrastructure. Working across several organizations, the Back-End Software Engineer will design and write software using best practices that meets the needs and requirements of our Data Platform and our broader project goals.


The Back-End Software Engineer will report directly to the Sr. Engineering Director, Data Products for MethaneSAT, LLC, and will work closely with other MethaneSAT, LLC staff, key contractors, and EDF staff. 


Key Responsibilities

  • Design and write software to further extend our Data Platform Backend, including complete sub-systems, new features, performance improvements as well as toolkits for our partners.
  • Collaborate effectively with varied stakeholders to determine the requirements for the Data Platform Back-End features and components.
  • Contribute to the engineering team regarding code quality, best practices, development workflow, test strategy and test coverage.
  • Conduct code reviews, bug bashes and design reviews with the team. Research new technologies and work through system issues and bug queue.
  • Navigate differing needs and priorities effectively and leverage experience to determine most effective design and recommendations.
  • Additional related responsibilities as needed.


  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required. BS in Computer Science or technical discipline preferred.
  • Must be a US person (citizen, green card holder); MethaneSAT, LLC is unable to offer employer-based sponsorship for this role at this time.
  • 3 years professional software development experience with demonstrated progressive responsibility and scope.
  • Extensive Cloud experience strongly-preferred. Scientific processing preferred.  Multi-cloud experience preferred.
  • Significant Go, C++ or JVM-based language experience. Must be willing to learn/use Go.
  • Working Knowledge of DevOps and SRE best practices strongly preferred.
  • Some Front-End development experience is preferred but not required.
  • Strong communication skills and ability to present your ideas to internal stakeholders are a must.
  • Ability to translate complex science and technical information to non-scientists stakeholders
  • Ability to lead and collaborate with colleagues and partners of varied backgrounds and experience;
  • Demonstrated ability to independently recommend and determine approaches to completing projects and managing processes where precedents are not available.
  • Strong ability to work independently on a multi-disciplinary team, using independent judgment required to plan, prioritize, and organize diversified workload;
  • Affinity for a fast-paced work environment;
  • Respect for economic and cultural diversity and ability or experience working with diverse groups of people.
  • Demonstrated experience collaborating with colleagues and partners of varied backgrounds and experience.

Please answer the 3 technical questions when prompted as part of your application.

MethaneSAT, LLC is an equal opportunity employer where an applicant's qualifications are considered without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other basis prohibited by law.