Our Team

ANZBIG warmly welcomes Professor Ross Garnaut as our Patron

Professor Ross Garnaut

Professor Ross Garnaut

Professor Garnaut is Australia’s most influential thinker on economic and climate policy, offering pragmatic solutions to complex policy problems that are tempered by a long career in international economics, business and public policy. He has chaired the boards of a number of businesses and charitable trusts including Bankwest (1988-95), Aluminium Smelters of Victoria (1988-90), Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (1994-2000), International Food Policy Research Institute (2003-2010), Lihir Gold (1996-2010), Lonely Planet Publications Pty Ltd (2002-2004), Papua New Guinea Sustainable Development Program (2002-2012). He is now Director of ZEN Energy and sister companies Sunshot Energy and Renergi.

Author of many influential reports to Governments including Australia and the Northeast Asian Ascendency (1989), The Garnaut Climate Change Review (2008), Australia in the Global Response to Climate Change (2011): and books, including most recently Superpower: Australia’s Low Carbon Opportunity (2019) and RESET: Restoring Australia After the Pandemic Recession.

Executive Board

Melissa Rebbeck

Melissa Rebbeck

Board Chair

Melissa Rebbeck has worked across a broad cross-section of stakeholders in the circular economy, agriculture, natural resource management and water to develop business cases, projects, policy and solutions to adapt and mitigate climate change. She has spearheaded over 40 projects and programs with every one of her projects achieved on time and in full with all milestones met. Melissa has 25 years of experience as a project developer, manager and applied researcher within SA Research and Development Institute, the University of Adelaide, and as managing director of her company ‘Climate & Agricultural Support Pty Ltd, now trading as Carbon Drawdown Projects Pty Ltd.

Melissa is an experienced communicator, pioneering conferences, developing and delivering workshops, facilitating, and developing a community of practices to increase knowledge uptake and practice change. She has polished written skills including producing books, publications, papers and long-term media columns.

Melissa has networks and stakeholder connections in Australia and abroad, exemplified through her broad range of board experience. Melissa concurrently recently completed a term as an elected member of the Alexandrina Council gaining increased experience with governance, policy development, business structure, project development and implementation. She is known as a director, a researcher, a consultant, an educator, a board chair, an entrepreneur, a secretary, a writer, an advocate, a manager and a project/business case developer.

Nigel Murphy

Nigel Murphy

Immediate Passed Board Chair

I am passionate about developing a strong Biochar sector in Australia and New Zealand. I am the founder and Director of Earth Systems and Cyclic Carbon, companies that have been actively innovating and commercialising technology in the Cleantech sector over the last 25 years including biochar. My biochar experience covers product development, IP protection, capital raising, commercialisation and market development. I have degrees in environmental and earth sciences and experience in working in Australia, China, S.E. Asia, Africa and the Pacific. I have provided technical advice to companies, government, financial institutions and the aid sector in environmental science, cleantech and environmental management. I am an Honorary Life Member of the Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand and was the foundation Chair of the Certified Environmental Practitioner Scheme for Australia and New Zealand (CEnvP). I am also the current Chair of the Victorian Cleantech Cluster.

Don Coyne

Don Coyne

CEO

I am a qualified horticulturist with over 25 years experience in the industry. I am also a qualified vocational trainer, frontline and small business manager. I have worked previously with NSW DPI Soils team as Technical Assistant on Biochar field trials. I own and operate Byron Biochar now in it’s eighth year, as a reseller of quality  Australian made biochar and wood vinegar, deliver workshops and consult to fast track your biochar business or project. In my previous to role, I was the First Public Officer & President for Australia New Zealand Biochar Initiative (ANZBI) from 2017-2020 and helped found, owned and operated the Australia New Zealand Biochar Conference from 2017-2020 now owned by ANZBIG. I am a long term climate activist and have a keen interest in off grid living and localisation of food and fibre production. I enjoy my morning walk, bushwalking and e-bike riding.

Phillip Henshall

Phillip Henshall

Treasurer

Has had an extensive business career in general management and senior commercial management positions in the manufacturing, service and IT industries He is currently Chairman of Century Orchards Ltd a large almond orchard, Director of Riverland Almonds Hulling Pty Ltd and company secretary/management/board advisor to several large family businesses. He is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a qualified CPA and has a Masters in Management and Technology (Melb University). In his spare time, he lives on a property in the Adelaide Hills tending his cattle.

Craig Bagnall

Craig Bagnall

Public Officer

Craig is Director of Environment and Regulatory with SEATA Group based in NSW who are developing an advanced technology for biochar and carbon-negative hydrogen, and is principal consultant with Catalyst  Environmental Management based in Newcastle. He is a Certified Environmental Practitioner with advanced accreditation for Impact Assessment, and an experienced environmental engineer who has worked across multiple sectors of industry and government since the early 1990’s. Craig is an active member of the ANZBIG Advisory Board, assisting the team with industry submissions for the national Bioenergy and Technology Roadmaps, responses to new methods for the Emissions Reduction Fund, and in the development of the ANZBIG Code of Practice. Craig has two young children who regularly provide his drive to to act on climate change, and he loves to work with inspired people.

Prof. Stephen Joseph

Prof. Stephen Joseph

Stephen Joseph holds a Bachelor of Applied Science in Metallurgical Engineering and a doctorate in Architecture and Applied Anthropology. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Energy, a chartered engineer and has been a senior adviser to both commercial, government and non-government organizations, in renewable energy, and sustainable agriculture and forestry. Stephen has extensive experience worldwide in all forms of renewable energy including biodiesel, oil from algae, biomass combustion, pyrolysis and gasification plant, biochar, plastic wood composite, microhydro, wind and solar energy additives for high strength concretes. He has also been involved in multi-country market research into areas related to biochar, waste recycling and renewable energy. He has written over 100 books and articles and lectured and trained other engineers and scientists throughout the world. He was the founding vice chairman of the International Biochar Initiative and co-editor with Dr. Johannes Lehmann of Biochar for Environmental Management. He served on the committee of Australia New Zealand Committee and was a founding memebr from 2017-2020. He is currently a visiting Professor at UNSW, UNE, Univ. of Wollongong and Nanjing Agricultural Univ., China

Brian Scott

Brian Scott

Experienced legal practitioner in the energy and infrastructure sector with over 15 years in Asia Pacific including time based in Jakarta Indonesia and over 10 years as a partner in a major international firm. Currently engaged in roles in a number of independent, energy sector businesses seeking to play a leading role in the transition of how we make, store and consume energy across a range of sectors.

Matthew Griffin

Matthew Griffin

Matt is the Chief Operating Officer of Advanced Energy Tech (AET) based in Central Victoria. AET is a waste and energy solutions business that develops projects in regional and rural communities, converting waste into resources. Matt has extensive experience in the energy and resource industry, having worked in senior roles within ExxonMobil for over a decade, including within Europe. He has a proven track record of leading high-performing teams across the manufacturing, business development, global projects, logistics, biofuels, sales and marketing, and trading functions. With a strategic mindset and an innovative and collaborative approach, Matt has consistently delivered exceptional results. Matt is known for his ability to manage complexity, drive continuous improvement, and deliver projects while ensuring safe, reliable, and profitable operations. He is a life-long learner and holds degrees in Engineering (Chemical) and Science, as well as an MBA with distinction from Melbourne Business School. He is passionate about using his skills to improve the world and make it a better place for future generations to enjoy. Matt is looking forward to helping scale the biochar industry in Australia and delivering on its promise of being an important negative emissions technology.

Karen Enkelaar

Karen Enkelaar

Karen Enkelaar is an editor, writer and researcher on the nutrition and health of animals and soils.

Along with Steve Sullings, she is Co-Director of a commercial biochar business, Agspand Pty Ltd, healthy profitable agriculture, based in Tasmania. Both Steve and Karen are passionate about biological, regenerative and carbon farming practices with biochar to help sequester carbon, nitrogen, water and nutrients for naturally productive soils.

For seven years Agspand has manufactured and sold its FEEDCHAR® and PETCHAR® registered trademark supplements in Australia, Certified Allowed Inputs for Organics SXC 19091.

Karen’s has had a huge contribution to ANZBIG’s Code of Practice for the Sustainable Production and Use of Biochar (2021), to help all local manufacturers test and certify fit-for-purpose biochar, whether feed-grade, fertiliser-grade, or industry-grade. By having test transparency, product understanding and application guidelines, biochar manufacturers as well as their customers may identify which grade of biochar may suit an intended outcome. Test transparency and its ensuing trust form a secure knowledge foundation to scale up the biochar industry.

Phil Stevens

Phil Stevens

Phil has been involved in the production, application, research, policy, and commercialisation of biochar for nearly a decade. As one of the founding members of the Biochar Network New Zealand, he has taken the lead on numerous initiatives to bring biochar into greater prominence in agriculture, forestry, waste minimisation, and climate mitigation and adaptation policy. His “day gig” is software development and systems, and in between IT consultancy posts he has also worked as a carbon and energy management analyst advising large institutional clients on emissions reduction and energy optimisation.

Phil puts biochar to work at Slow Farm, his family’s smallholding in the Manawatū. Regenerative methods to increase biodiversity, enhance soil life, and manage excess biomass all involve biochar as a key ingredient and serve the mission of community outreach and education.

Barry Croker

Barry Croker

Barry is an experienced senior executive possessing 25+ years’ experience in broadacre agriculture in Australia and internationally. A commercially focused, innovative and strategic thinker, with a demonstrated ability to quickly visualise situations, identify and establish and deliver strategic and operational plans through to execution. I have always sought and accepted new challenges, the biochar industry provides unique opportunities and challenges and I look forward to making a contribution to development and growth of the industry.

Advisory Board

All members of our executive board are on our advisory board
Annette Cowie

Annette Cowie

I am a Technical Specialist climate policy (Principal research scientist) Climate Research and Development at the NSW Department of Primary Industries. My Research interests include sustainable land management – indicators, assessment, certification and policy development, assessing and enhancing resilience of agro-ecosystems, carbon dynamics in agriculture and forestry, GHG accounting for inventory and emissions trading, life cycle assessment, especially to assess the carbon footprint of products, and climate change mitigation value of reforestation, bioenergy and biochar systems. I have a background in soil science and plant nutrition, with particular interest in sustainable resource management. Annette contributes to development of climate change policy and GHG mitigation in the agriculture sector, including GHG accounting for emissions trading at state, national and international levels. Annette was a lead author in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Climate Change and Land, and is a lead author in the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report.

Graham Lancaster

Graham Lancaster

I am a long-term professional staff member Southern Cross University and its predecessor institutions since the early 1990s. In 1987 I commenced study in the Bachelor of Applied Science Coastal Management and then conducted Honours in 1990 in water and environmental chemistry. Under the mentorship of Professor David McConchie (Dec.) I was instrumental in the establishment of the University’s Environmental Analysis Laboratory (EAL) in 1993 which was initially based in the School of Environment, Science and Management. The EAL start-up concept was due to a lack of instrumentation funding available to a small regional university to support research, therefore commercial income was essential. The EAL is now a successful research, teaching and environmental agricultural laboratory supporting over 40 staff and has a commercial income of almost $5m per year with continued national and international growth. I have been Director/Manager of the EAL for over 29 years. I am very active with the University Gym and running groups, in the community for regional tennis and international competitive waveski surfing.

Shaun Scallan

Shaun Scallan

Shaun is a passionate CleanTech startup specialist having been involved in 4 Cleantech startups in the last 6 years.  Before this was a career spanning engineering and consulting in the water industry through to IT, Corporate Social Responsibility and then Planet Ark where his CleanTech journey started in earnest. He studied Electrical Engineering with postgraduate studies in Chemical Engineering and a MSc in Renewable Energy. He is committed to playing his part in creating a renewable, sustainable and just future for all. The challenge of our times is to restore the earth and it starts with the soil.

Lorraine Gordon

Lorraine Gordon

Lorraine Gordon is the founder of the Regenerative Agriculture Alliance based out of Southern Cross University. As Director of Strategic Projects at Southern Cross University and Associate Director of the University’s Centre for Organic Research, Lorraine acts as a conduit between industry and research, delivering sustainable and regenerative agriculture solutions nationally. Lorraine has been instrumental in bringing together leaders in regenerative agriculture to create and champion the development this world-first degree. Lorraine is a beef cattle trader at Ebor in the New England Tablelands and was awarded the 2018 Rural Community Leader of the Year for Australia and was a 2019 nominee and finalist for Australian of the Year for her work with farmers.

Russ Martin

Russ Martin

Russ has over 30 years’ experience in product stewardship, circular economy, public policy, bioenergy and sustainability, both in government and as an advisor to industry and governments. These roles have been in the US, Australia, New Zealand and Middle East. Primary responsibilities include serving as CEO of the not-for-profit Global Product Stewardship Council, Director of consultancy MS2 and Founder of the International Stewardship Forum series, including the Sydney Forum 2018 and Paris Forum 2019.

Russ was awarded the Global Green Future Leadership Award by the World CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) Congress. Russ was appointed to the Australian Government’s Product Stewardship Advisory Group, as the Independent Chair leading the development of a national product stewardship approach for handheld batteries in Australia, and to the advisory body for Australia’s development of product stewardship framework legislation.

From developing and implementing a market-based approach to increase packaging recycling in Florida to chairing the inaugural Australian Greenhouse Conference, to crafting innovative waste management legislation in the United Arab Emirates, Russ has long been a leader in developing innovative yet pragmatic policies and programs.

Adrian Morphett

Adrian Morphett

I am an environmental engineer with over 27 years experience in energy and carbon sector. I have specialised in conducting greenhouse gas and energy audits to comply with the relevant regulations and standards; and providing specialist technical, engineering and commercialisation consulting on biomass and bioenergy technologies, and industrial and commercial building energy efficiency projects. I have had a varied career spanning several industries including petrochemical, government, academia, energy design and mechanical drafting. I am co-inventor of the Charmaker Batch & Continuous pyrolysis technologies and run the Green Man Char operations @ Earth Systems.

Euan Beamont

Euan Beamont

Originally a farmer from Mullewa, Western Australia, I am the co-founder of Energy Farmers Australia. I hold a degree in Agribusiness, a diploma in Farm Management and have over 20 years experience in agriculture. I lease my farm to local farmers from Mullewa and I take a keen interest in the West Australian agriculture industry. I have also travelled and worked throughout the world in various logistic and construction roles with the French aid organisation Medecins Sans Frontieres or Doctors without Borders. I have worked for a large offsetting company in WA, have studied carbon accounting and reporting and have a strong knowledge of the Australian carbon market. I have experience in business development, stakeholder engagement, public relations, marketing and international logistics. I participate on a number of boards and steering committees.

Jennifer Lauber-Patterson

Jennifer Lauber-Patterson

Jennifer Lauber Patterson, Managing Director of Frontier Impact Group, has a 30 year track record in developing and advising on technologies or solutions that have an environmental and social impact. Jennifer’s passion is to fill the gaps between a good idea or new technology or business models by assisting it to become a bankable outcome. Jennifer commenced her career over 30 years ago, when she was awarded a company sponsored scholarship in the electricity generation sector in the Latrobe Valley. She started working on the shop floor before moving up in to management, senior finance and then electricity trading roles. Nearly 25 years ago she pioneered one of the first green electricity trades in the market that began her interest in sustainable solutions.

David Hubbard

David Hubbard

David Hubbard is an authentic, considerate and diligent person, as described by many clients, close friends and family. Graduating as a Chartered Accountant, David built his career supporting organisations to achieve their strategic goals, create solid financial models, improve efficiency, and increase profits. However David wanted to have more impact in the community. David purposely drew upon those years of commercial finance experience to strengthen purpose-driven businesses to serve more of the vulnerable and improve people’s lives. That’s why in 2014 CINCH Transform was founded. Since then, David and his team have worked tirelessly with many Purpose-Driven Organisations to develop profitable business models, adapt to change and fulfilling their purpose of helping more vulnerable people. Visit www.cinchtransform.com.au for case studies, download the 10 Phase CINCH Transformation Program and find out more about why David does what he does.

Ignatius Verbeek

Ignatius Verbeek

I am highly professional, forward thinking and organized, and have exceptional business acumen. With enthusiasm and energy, I possess expertise of translating the bigger picture strategically and tactically. An invaluable asset, going above and beyond expectations. A seasoned Carbon Farming Expert specialising in soil carbon methodology, technology and software development. With over 15 years experience in the field, I have worked on various projects such as developing advanced soil carbon measurement systems, developing and submitting methodology under Carbon Farming Initiative and undertaking soil carbon field trials. Member, LCA (life cycle analysis) expert panel for Greenhouse Friendly™ Scheme, Advisory panel to GBCA on the Green Building Steel Credit, Founding Member of Soil Carbon Industry Group (SCIG) and Program Manager for the development of the Australian Building Greenhouse Rating Scheme.

Philip Link

Philip Link

Philip has 15 years experience in management consulting, advisory and assurance across vastly diverse interests within clean tech: from carbon management, energy efficiency, renewable energy and biofuels, sustainability & climate disclosure and economic & cost benefit analysis. Philip has formal qualifications in economics & environmental management and is EnergyLink Services’ Managing Director.

Dr Mayuri Wijayasundara

Dr Mayuri Wijayasundara

Mayuri is a leading expert in strategy and transformation specialising in enablers of transition towards a circular economy. She has been leading a research group at Deakin University as a tenured academic and was the Deakin Lead Investigator and a Chief Investigator for Australian Research Council funded Industrial Transformation Research Hub for Transformation of Waste Resources to Engineered Materials and Solutions for a Circular Economy (TREMS). Mayuri joined academia, following a career as an industry/business leader leading transformative project for nearly a decade, in several countries in the Asia Pacific. Mayuri has published in acclaimed international forums such as World Economic Forum and The Conversation and is a speaker at national and international forums in circular economy. Mayuri obtained her PhD from the University of Melbourne and is a chartered management accountant of CIMA, UK. Mayuri currently leading the professional practice Anvarta and is engaged as Circular Economy Expert with UN Habitat.

Patrice Newell

Patrice Newell

Patrice Newell was once on Television. But she left that industry in 1987 to become a sustainable land manager and writer/researcher dedicated to developing and communicating improved agricultural systems and innovations in an era of rapid climate change. Elmswood Farm has been her obsession ever since. Read about her PhD in Biochar & CV 

Dr Aravind Surapaneni

Dr Aravind Surapaneni

Aravind works at South East Water as a Principal Scientist. He is also Program Manager for Intelligent Water Networks Biosolids and Resource Recovery Program and Deputy Director for “Australian Research Council Training Centre for the Transformation of Australia’s Biosolids Resource” based at RMIT Bundoora campus. He drives recycled water, biosolids, waste management, soils and groundwater programs that will contribute to the understanding and management of product risk. He is responsible for leading water industry and academic research programs and collaborations at state and national level. He is instrumental in leading a range of activities in the biochar/biosolids both in Victoria and nationally.

Ellen Tao

Ellen Tao

Ellen Tao is a senior process engineer in Melbourne Water. Ellen has over 15 years of experience working in the water industry and has a strong wastewater engineering background. She is passionate about biosolids/biochar reuse, resource recovery, circular economy and net zero emission. Ellen aims to work closely with ANZBIG and contribute to the development of both the water and Biochar industry. She is also a member of the Australian and New Zealand Biosolids Partnership advisory board and has a BE in Water and Wastewater Engineering and a MEngSc in Project Management.

Andre Van Zyl

Andre Van Zyl

Mr. Van Zyl graduated in 1986 as a Chemical Engineer from the “VAAL UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY” in South Africa. He has substantial experience in process plant design and commissioning for the steel, water treatment, mineral processing and mining industry in Africa, Asia and South America. For the past 15 years he has focused substantially and has acquired specialized knowledge and skills in pavement and construction technology, especially in the development, manufacturing and application of environmentally friendly emulsified bitumen cold premix materials for new urban and remote infrastructure development areas. During the last 4 years, he has been instrumental in the further development and re-design of carbon rich binder technologies to suite specific climatic, geotechnical and soil conditions as commercially viable and carbon neutral/negative construction products in the ASEAN region, utilizing large quantities of BioChar and other products obtained from torrefaction and pyrolysis processes.