About the project



Zero30 will achieve certification of the Armidale Local Government Area through the Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard for Precincts. The Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard will help us to manage our greenhouse emissions and achieve our goal of carbon neutrality by 2030.

Who can be involved in Project Zero30?

Many organisations are managing their greenhouse gas emissions to position themselves for growth and competitiveness in a lower-emissions future. Businesses are also choosing to go one step further and demonstrate leadership and corporate responsibility by becoming carbon neutral. If your business is interested in becoming carbon neutral, please contact us to discuss how you can take part in Project Zero30.

Joining forces

The Armidale Regional Council, in partnership with the University of New England, have combined networks, know-how and resources to move the Armidale Local Government Region to zero net C02 emissions by 2030.

Contributing to research with impact

The Zero30 Project is driven by research which will empower our regional community to engage and participate in our citizen science network, directly benefitting our Armidale Local Government Area.

Meet the Zero30 Board

Professor Heiko Daniel
University of New England

Professor Heiko Daniel is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) (DVCR).  In this role, he provides strategic leadership for all aspects of the University’s research activities, oversight of the UNE Research Strategic Plan, and oversees the strategies and operations of the Research Services Directorate.

The portfolio responsibilities associated with the DVCR Office include a broad range of research support services for staff and postgraduate higher degree research students.  This extends to the oversight and responsibility for developing and maintaining relationships with the Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs), Joint Ventures with New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, the Collaborative Research Network for Mental Health and Wellbeing in Rural and Regional Communities (CRN — Mental Health) and for intellectual property and commercialisation matters.

Strategies implemented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), are directed to continuously expand the University’s research effort, and enhance its research excellence, with a focus on research that is of particular significance to rural and regional communities. Information about UNE’s research strategies are contained within the UNE Research Plan, and are administered through the University’s Research Services Directorate.

Anthony Fox
Fox Legal

Anthony obtained his Arts/Law degree from Australian National University and subsequently completed a Master of Laws at Sydney University. He is a Nationally Accredited Mediator (NMAS) and is a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner holding a Graduate Diploma of Family Dispute Resolution Practice.

Anthony has worked as a solicitor and then as a partner in national law firms in Sydney for most of his working life. He also gained experience in the corporate sector working for Munich Reinsurance Company of Australasia.

In 2003, he moved to Armidale to practice. Anthony is also experienced in the higher education sector having worked under contract as University Lawyer at the University of New England from 2004 – 2009. His background is commercial litigation, and commercial advice in a wide variety of areas such as insurance, professional liability and transport and extends to other areas such as family law, wills and estates, employment and general commercial work. Anthony is a member of the Management Committee of Armidale Business Chamber and a member of the Committee of Management of New England North West Legal Service.

Anthony over the years has given papers on a diverse number of issues, such as director’s liability, environmental liability, property and insurance and has been a part time lecturer at the University of New England.

Kate Mitchell
City Centre Motor Inn

The City Centre Motor Inn has recently become the first accommodation provider in Australia to be fully certified as Carbon Neutral under the National Carbon Offset Standard. City Centre Motor Inn’s emission reducing strategies are here.

So far the City Centre Motor Inn have been recognised on a local level where they took out the first prize for Excellence in Sustainability at the 2019 Armidale Business Chamber awards.

They have also been recognised on a national level for their Environmental Program where they are in the finals for the 2019 HM Awards – Major Awards – Environmental Program, to be announced early September 2020.

Agricultural Representative
To be announced!

Meet the Zero30 Project Leaders

Ambrose Hallman
Project Lead on behalf of Armidale Regional Council

Ambrose is currently the Service Leader of Sustainability and Development at Armidale Regional Council.  As a local home owner, Ambrose is passionate about supporting local businesses with pursuing environmentally sustainable and efficient options for growing their business, as well as being an advocate for the adoption of new technologies across the Armidale and Guyra Local Government Area.

Associate-Professor David Miron
Project Lead on behalf of the University of New England

David is one of the Zero30 Project Leads, as well as the Director Strategic Research Initiatives at University of New England, Armidale. David has a PhD in Computer Science, and a passion for pursuing research outcomes which provide benefit regional communities, farmers and local businesses.

Meet our Science Advisory Committee

Professor Tom Davison
Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA)

Dr Davison has worked in research management for twenty years across Rural Research & Development Corporations, most recently with Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), where he managed large research projects in a portfolio covering feedbase, environment and climate.

Dr. Malcolm Robertson
Department of Primary Industries (DPI NSW)

Malcolm Robertson is currently Senior Project Officer in the Climate Resilience and Net Zero Emissions team, NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment. With over 14 years’ experience in state and local government, Malcolm has led regional assessments on climate change adaptation and been a knowledge broker of climate change information. Malcolm also has experience in coastal and flood management, energy and water programs, health and environmental assessment.

Dr Sandra Eady
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)

Dr Sandra Eady is a Post-Retirement Fellow based at CSIRO Agriculture and Food, Armidale, NSW.

Dr Eady is a livestock geneticist with expertise in developing national breeding programs and implementing them on-farm. Her current activities expand her expertise in farming systems to the area of life cycle assessment, determining the carbon and water for agricultural products, on-farm greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions profiles and opportunities for biosequestration of carbon.

Dr Eady is lead author of a CSIRO report that explores the GHG mitigation and carbon storage opportunities from rural land use for Queensland and, more broadly, Australia, a publication that shaped the design of nation policy on climate change. She is a member of a number of working groups guiding precincts to achieve a zero net emissions goal. Sandra has completed a number of lifecycle assessments for agricultural products, including canola for access to the lucrative EU biofuel market, and continues to lead the development of a publicly available database of life cycle inventory, published through AusLCI.

Professor Neil Argent
University of New England

Professor Argent’s research interests centre on understanding the factors and processes that make robust and sustainable rural communities. He is particularly keen on investigating the role of migration – especially city to rural migration and youth out-migration from rural areas – in changing the social and demographic make-up of rural communities.

He also has a strong interest in social theory, especially as it relates to our understandings of space and place, and the key roles each plays within our lives. All of these research interests are reflected in his list of grants and publications (below). In summary, he would say that he is a geographer because of his fascination with understanding why standards of living and ways of life vary from place to place. For him it is critical to know these things before we can intervene to tackle problems like poverty and deleterious environmental change.

Dr Rachel Lawrence

Rachel studied forest ecology at the University of Tasmania and then completed her PhD in grazing management and grassland ecology at the University of New England. She has worked in a range of agroecological roles including locust control, Integrated Pest Management for insects, forest health and as a landcare facilitator. Rachel currently works in the development of farm-scale Natural Capital Accounting which is intended to support farmers to better steward the underlying natural resource-base that their farm businesses rely on. The approach also enables a quantification of net carbon and biodiversity losses and/or gains for a farm business. Rachel is also passionate about Permaculture and the role local food production has in reducing carbon emissions while at the same time helping to address a range of environmental, health and social issues.

Professor Annette Cowie
Department of Primary Industries (DPI NSW)

Annette Cowie has a background in soil science and plant nutrition, with particular interest in sustainable resource management. She is Principal Research Scientist -Climate, in NSW Department of Primary Industries. From 2009 to early 2014 she was the Director of Rural Climate Solutions, an alliance between NSW DPI and the University of New England.

Annette is also Task Leader of the International Energy Agency Bioenergy research network “Climate Change Effects of Biomass and Bioenergy Systems”, Land Degradation advisor on the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel of the Global Environment Facility, and a member of the Science Policy Interface of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification. Her current research focuses on sustainability assessment and greenhouse gas accounting in agriculture and forestry; investigating key aspects of soil carbon dynamics and biochar processes; and life cycle assessment of forestry, bioenergy and biochar systems.

Meet our Community Advisory Committee

Jacqui Moar
Moar Windows & Doors

Jacqui owns an Armidale-based business, Moar Windows & Doors. Jacqui and her husband Andrew commenced business in 1997, where their tradesmen have been working in specialist timber joinery since 1986.

Jacqui and Andrew are proud to be an environmentally conscious business (together with Energy Efficient Windows Australia), which manufactures and supplies a complete range of high-quality, solid timber and uPVC windows and doors to the local community.

David Steller
Armidale Tree Group

David is currently volunteering for the not-for-profit organisation, Armidale Tree Group. 

Previously, David has worked for 33 years in local government engineering roles, having retired from his position as Director of Strategic Projects and Public Infrastructure in 2017.

David has also supported engineering associations and served as Chair of the New England North West Group of IPWEA, and member of the Northern Group of Engineers Australia.

David is still active in the Rotary Club of Armidale Central and has worked on many overseas projects as a volunteer team leader through Rotary Australia World Community Service.

Tracy Wright
Raw Fibre and New England Collective

Tracy Wright is an Armidale local, who founded her own Raw Fibre label in 2016. Tracy is focused on challenging the trend of fast fashion by producing a range of women’s wear from beautiful natural fibres.  All of her garments are currently made locally using fibres such as wool, linen, cotton and silk.

Tracy’s rural origins have resulted in her seeking inspiration from the natural environment and the beauty it encapsulates. This love of nature has carried through to the brand’s ethos.

Tracy’s focus on the use of the finest quality fabrics and yarns has been well supported by women in the New England area and beyond, with this regional business continuing to grow.

Kàren Zirkler

Karen Zirkler grew up on grain-growing farms in North West NSW, and is now an executive director of a family grazing operation in the New England.

Karen has a Bachelor of Science (Australian Environmental Studies), with First Class Honours. She has 30 years’ experience working in sustainable agriculture extension and Landcare, through roles with the Queensland Department of Primary Industries, Griffith University, Edith Cowan University, and currently as the CEO of Southern New England Landcare Ltd. In December 2020, Karen was appointed to the board of the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust.

Karen brings experience in communicating with, engaging, and resourcing landholders and other stakeholders. She spent two years overseas in the 1990s working in publication and marketing and has since edited and designed many natural resource management publications for rural audiences. She has the rare ability to facilitate groups through complex decisions using participatory leadership processes, to arrive at co-created solutions.

Karen has an expansive rural and regional network and first-hand experience of key issues currently affecting rural communities. Her interests and hobbies include carriage driving with her Welsh pony, Australian Stock Horses and implementing regenerative and sustainable practice on the family farm.