The Team

Lucas McKinnon, Director | Principal Ecologist | Accredited BAM Assessor
BSCENV (HONS), GRADCERT ORNITHOLOGY

Lucas is the Director and Principal Ecologist at Ecoplanning Pty Ltd, with over 15 years’ experience working in both the private and public sectors.  Lucas has previously worked with the NSW Government in native vegetation and threatened species policy, as well as the on-ground regulation of native forestry on private land in NSW and has been a consultant ecologist for the past 10 years.

 Lucas is one of the most experienced offsetting practitioners in NSW, having been accredited under the former NSW Biobanking Scheme in 2010 (scheme established late in 2008) and was one of the first consultants accredited under the Biodiversity Offsets Scheme under the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 (BC Act).  Lucas has submitted many Biodiversity Development Assessment Report (BDARs) and one Biodiversity Stewardship Assessment (conservation site – formerly Biobank sites) under the BC Act, and numerous BSA Feasibility studies.  Under the former Biobanking scheme, he prepared numerous formal and informal Biobanking assessments (for development and conservation sites), and numerous Biocertification Assessments (landscape scale approach for strategic planning by State and Local Governments), including the first Biocertification of land in south-western Sydney using the Biocertification Methodology 2011. 

 Lucas has undertaken flora and fauna surveys across NSW and the ACT, and has completed a Graduate Certificate in Ornithology.  He has also acted as an Expert Witness in the NSW Land and Environment Court.  With highly developed skills in research, policy development and project management, these skills are complemented by his field capabilities in flora and fauna survey.  He has worked on a variety of small and large scale projects, including vegetation mapping, impact assessment, biodiversity offset strategies, flora and fauna monitoring, targeted threatened species surveys and a number of Biobanking, Biocertification and Major Project assessments.

Bruce Mullins, DIRECTOR | PRINCIPAL ECOLOGIST | Accredited BAM Assessor
Bsc, MSc

Bruce is a senior ecologist whose experience centres on NSW and the ACT, but extends across Australia. For more than 25 years, Bruce has worked with a range of public and private clients in the mining, urban development, infrastructure and government sectors to design and implement solutions to complex ecological problems.

 Bruce’s background in the field of ecology extends to the management of diverse teams, where he was responsible for winning tenders, setting technical direction, supervising quality control and ensuring meaningful staff development. Bruce’s assortment of technical expertise has been tested during several cases in the NSW Land and Environment Court, where he appeared as an expert witness for the successful litigant.

 Bruce is  also an accredited BAM Assessor and will apply a logical, rigorous approach to your planning or conservation project, to deliver quality, effective and economical outcomes.

bRIAN tOWLE, Senior ECOLOGIST | Accredited BAM Assessor
b.envsc. (hons 1)

Brian is a senior ecologist with over 14 years’ experience as an environmental consultant. During this time he has worked primarily as a botanist, undertaking a range of projects including vegetation-monitoring programs, BAM assessments, BioBanking agreements, applications for biodiversity certification, large-scale vegetation mapping/modelling projects, targeted threatened species surveys, and a range of impact assessments. 

 An accredited BAM Assessor, Brian has highly developed skills in the identification of flora species and ecological communities. He has undertaken research into the ecology of native orchids, co-authoring publications within peer-reviewed journals.

Brian has worked in a range of ecosystems across NSW and in parts of Queensland (including the Bowen Basin), His work has taken him from coast to coast, to the far-western plains and includes studies of arid woodlands, shrublands and grasslands, wet sclerophyll forests, rainforests and coastal swamps.’ .He has accrued extensive experience of a diversity of flora and fauna distributed across these ecosystems.

 Brian also has a sound knowledge of environmental and planning legislation, and has applied his skills and ecological expertise to a range of projects, including as an expert witness in the Land and Environment Court. He works with a variety of clients from local councils to state agencies and private industry, which requires him to communicate effectively with a range of professionals and the general public, in writing and in person.

LIZ NORRIS, SENIOR ECOLOGIST
bsc, msc

Liz has 35 years botanical and ecological research in the New South Wales: Sydney Basin, Coastal New South Wales, Hunter Valley, North and South Western Slopes and Plains, often to remote areas. She has a Bachelor of Science, a post graduate certificate in electron microscopy and a Master of Science (Thesis) “A study of the soil and vegetation patterns within part of the Pilliga Forests, and an evaluation of the impact of European settlement on the vegetation”.

Liz has been involved in a large number of systematic floristic surveys, targeted flora surveys, vegetation monitoring, the development of strategic conservation plans, other ecological assessments and an ecological expert to the NSW Land and Environment Court. She has been an employee at the National Herbarium, Royal Botanical Gardens from 1982 – 2009 and has undertaken a range of duties including various research projects and curation of the herbarium collection.  Liz has extensive experience as a field botanist, has written species descriptions for the Flora of NSW, and provided technical advice at flora workshops.

TAMMY PAARTALU, SENIOR ECOLOGIST | Accredited BAM Assessor
b.envsc. (hons 1)

Tammy is a senior ecologist with over 17 years’ experience in conducting and managing a diversity of ecological projects for a variety of clients including local government, the Department of Defence and the private sector. She has worked with a number of large environmental consultancies on numerous projects in a variety of locations throughout NSW, Queensland, Victoria and the ACT.

 Tammy has experience in the preparation of environmental impact assessments in both terrestrial and aquatic environments, constraints and opportunities reporting, and fauna monitoring and surveying. She is experienced in plant identification, vegetation mapping and classification, aerial photograph interpretation, vegetation monitoring, BAM, BioBanking and Biocertification assessments, and detailed flora and fauna assessments.

 Tammy has undertaken numerous assessments for infrastructure projects, including linear infrastructure such as powerlines/energy generation, pipelines, roads, rail, and wind farms. She is also an accredited BAM Assessor (formerly BioBanking Assessor) and has undertaken a number of Biocertification and BioBanking assessments in NSW.

THOMAS HICKMAN, ECOLOGIST
b. BIO. CONS (mqu)

Tom has over six years’ experience working on the ground in bush regeneration. He has built a comprehensive understanding of bush regeneration principles, plant identification and weed management. His broad ecological knowledge has enabled him to continually deliver quality environmental outcomes, while his liaison experience with councils has proved invaluable for the successful and timely management of contracts.

 While at Ecoplanning, Tom has gained experience in a range of ecological surveys, impact assessments, and environmental monitoring. While most of his projects centre on the Greater Sydney Basin and Illawarra, his experience also extends along the eastern half of NSW and the ACT.

Dr John Gollan, ECOLOGIST
PhD

John is an ecologist with 12 years of experience in both the public and private sectors.  He has a diverse background in both aquatic and terrestrial ecology, specialising in ecosystem rehabilitation, terrestrial invertebrates, invasive animals and assessment of landscape scale processes and functions.  He has worked as a private consultant where he has assisted in preparing numerous BioBanking and Biodiversity Certification projects in the south western Sydney and Illawarra regions.  Along with this diverse background, he has skills to match including survey design and statistical analysis, GIS and spatial analysis, and community-stakeholder engagement including initiation and management of citizen science projects.  He has many years of field experience having conducted biodiversity surveys in some of the remotest areas of Australia including Lord Howe Island and led surveys of short-range endemic invertebrates in the Pilbara as part of EIAs.  His past employment with the Australian Museum saw him manage several citizen science programs, and the development of biodiversity monitoring methods that could be used by community groups.

Along with surveys of terrestrial fauna, he has also conducted numerous fish, sponge and seagrass surveys in NSW coastal estuaries and lagoons.  His most prominent aquatic work has investigated the impact of the noxious marine seaweed Caulerpa taxifolia.  Over the last 8 years, he has project-managed and attracted grants and commercial tenders to the value of $1.5M. 

A strong publication record in scientific journals demonstrates the quality and relevance of his work.  His research profile can be found at: https://scholar.google.com.au/citations?user=06Uo5EQAAAAJ&hl=en

JO DALY, gis / ENVIRONMENTAL CONSULTANT
bENVSC (HONS)

Jo has over ten years’ experience in Geographical Information Systems (GIS), working in environmental consulting and state government.  She has a range of GIS skills, using the ESRI suite of products (e.g. ArcGIS Desktop) including: map production; vectorisation; digitizing and spatial analysis.  Jo is required to manage spatial data efficiently and effectively.  This includes managing the large quantities of data that is received and created as part of a project as well as working with large datasets cover a wide area.

 Jo has also been exposed to the back-end database side of GIS as well as training and trouble-shooting for users.  In recent years, her consulting experience has involved the use of GIS to determine the inputs for the Credit Calculator for the Biodiversity Assessment Method (BAM) and former BioBanking Assessments.

Kieren Northam, Ecologist
BEnvSc (Hons)

Kieren is an ecologist with Ecoplanning.  Prior to joining Ecoplanning in early 2017, Kieren worked as an Environmental Monitoring Officer in the mining industry. Experience in the mining sector developed his understanding of coal mining practices and remote area safety.

Kieren demonstrated his innate attention to detail while working with a leading academic at the University of Wollongong. During this time he enhanced his research skills in the areas of planning, testing and implementing scientifically sound methods, and became more proficient cleaning and collating data and writing concise reports.

While at Ecoplanning, Kieren has broadened his technical skills, experience with ecological survey (including BAM assessments), understanding of planning legislation, environmental monitoring, reporting and GIS mapping.

Angela Bibby, Ecologist
B.Ecology (UNE)

Angela is an Ecologist with a diverse background of over 18 years in media and communications. This valuable experience translates into an ability to effectively communicate with staff and clients on complex environmental issues. After turning her skills towards the study of ecology, Angela’s enthusiasm and hard work was acknowledged by being honoured as a Vice Chancellor Scholar for four years running whilst gaining a Bachelor of Ecology at the University of New England.

Angela has been with Ecoplanning since 2017, during which time she has undertaken numerous Flora and Fauna Assessments, Ecological Constraints Reports and more recently Biodiversity Development Assessment Reports (BDARs). She has been involved in a broad range of fieldwork, including systematic floristic surveys, targeted flora surveys, vegetation monitoring, gathering BAM and BBAM plot data and threatened species searches. Angela also assists in GIS map production, digitisation and spatial analysis using ESRI ArcGIS.

Stephanie Cerato, ECOLOGIST
BSc Cons Bio (Hons)

Stephanie began her career with Illawarra Coal Mining Company establishing skills and experience via projects involving endangered species surveys and monitoring, surface subsidence monitoring and environmental hazard identification on active mine sites.

Since joining Ecoplanning in 2018 she has been developing as an ecological consultant/ecologist by undertaking ecological surveys consistent with the Biodiversity Assessment Method, environmental impact assessments, walked line transects to estimate populations of eastern grey kangaroo, GIS support and preparing components of various reports.

Stephanie has extensive volunteering experience in arid areas of Western NSW and SA, remote forest locations in Northern NSW, and marine, estuarine and freshwater experience in Eastern NSW. Through her volunteering engagements Stephanie furthered her experience trapping, handling, identifying and assessing the health of small mammals, reptiles and amphibians.

CARL TIPPLER, SENIOR AQUATIC ECOLOGIST (ASSOCIATE)
bSC (ENVIRONMENT, ACCREDITED BIOBANKING ASSESSOR

Carl is an ecologist with over 10 years postgraduate experience working in both private and public sectors, including local and state government agencies. He has worked in various industries including mining, port authorities, drinking water catchments, quarrying and landfill.

Carl has specialist skills in aquatic ecology which he has applied to a range of projects including freshwater and intertidal macroinvertebrate surveys, benthic diatom monitoring, algae sampling, surface and ground water quality monitoring, riparian and intertidal vegetation assessment, saltmarsh restoration, aquatic environmental impact assessment and river health monitoring. Carl has a high level of research and communication skills, evidenced by numerous peer reviewed publications, presentations and workshops.

Contact

Please contact Ecoplanning to speak to one of our experienced specialists:

Lucas   0421 603 549
Bruce  0497 888 225
info@ecoplanning.com.au