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From oil & gas worker to renewable energy instructor

“I need to figure out what I need and how much money I need, not to come back.” Another career transition story in Episode 3 of our podcast.

Devin Keats was an oil and gas worker and earning a good salary. However he was working in a camp away from home and always wondering when the next layoff was coming. Like the majority of fossil fuel workers Iron & Earth and Abacus polled in 2021, he knew he was ready for a change.

As a Red Seal electrician he had some options and headed back to Newfoundland and Labrador and learned how to install solar panels. The rest as the old expression goes, is history, because now Devin is working full time in renewable energy where salaries are comparable to or higher than average salaries in Canada.  Devin was also an instructor on our solar power installation last year in Hopedale and Rigolet in Nunatsiavut on the North Coast of Labrador.

It was a tiny solar charger he had several years ago that led to the realization that there was a future for him in the renewable energy sector close to home and not part of the boom-and-bust cycle. He talked with freelance broadcaster Don Hill about his transition and his thoughts about the future of renewable power in episode 3 of our Renewable Conversations with Iron & Earth.



This blog is funded in part by the Government of Canada's Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program.

Iron & Earth is committed to partnering with Indigenous workers to empower their communities to become self-sufficient in training programs, clean energy transition projects, and employment opportunities to combat environmental racism. It falls to all of us to continue the work of healing and reconciliation in our communities and our organizations. Our relationship with the land and the people who live here shapes who we are. It is in the spirit of reconciliation and honouring the past that we recognize treaties and agreements wherever they are and wherever we work.

We also acknowledge all peoples who live, work, and play on this land, and who honour and celebrate this territory.
As individuals and teams we may make mistakes along the way, but we are dedicated to growth, openness, compassion, and forgiveness. These principles in our work are essential to building successful and healthy relationships with individuals, communities, organizations, and governments.

We look forward to building a path to lead us to a better relationship with Indigenous nations and the environment around us based on peace, friendship, and respect.