This episode is part of our Skilled Labor Series hosted by MCJ partner, Yin Lu. This series is focused on amplifying the voices of folks from the skilled labor workforce, including electricians, farmers, ranchers, HVAC installers, and others who are on the front lines of rewiring our infrastructure.
Today is Zach Gallant, Head of Maritime Operations at Fleetzero.
Zach grew up in Maine and attended the Maine Maritime Academy after high school. He spent 15 years on board ships of all types and sizes. His career started on freighters carrying bulk cargo such as iron ore in the Great Lakes. Then Zach worked at Transocean, the world's largest offshore drilling contractor, for over a decade. He recently transitioned to Fleetzero, a startup building a fleet of electric ships to help address and reduce the carbon emissions from the shipping industry, which accounts for about 3% of total global emissions.
As investors in Fleetzero via the MCJ Collective venture funds, we’ve also spoken to co-founders, Steven Hendersen and Mike Carter, in a previous Startup Series episode (listen here). Enjoy the show!
In this episode, we cover:
[2:00] Zach's background and experience as a marine engineer
[7:42] A career working on the deck side of ships vs the engineering side
[11:13] Different types of maritime ships and propulsion systems
[15:33] Zach's firsthand experience witnessing the impacts of climate change
[18:41] The process of setting up an exploratory drill well
[24:33] Zach's decision to transition out of oil and gas into a climate tech maritime company
[27:51] Technological shifts in the maritime industry
[30:05] Shortage of maritime workers and how to encourage more people to get involved
[32:23] What keeps Zach optimistic
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Episode recorded on December 21, 2022.