BNNZ Committee


Dennis Enright – Chair – Otago
Based at Mosgiel near Dunedin,  Dennis has more than 20 years experience in soil and fertiliser research with AgResearch. He has spent a similar amount of time in organic production and certification.

Dennis owns NZ Biochar Ltd, established in 2008 and is focused on having Biochar recognised and used to benefit productive soils and the environment.


Ben Elms – Treasurer – Otago
I live in Hawea Flat, Central Otago, on a 20 Hectare lifestyle block. I am involved in education around composting and growing food (Dr Compost), as well as mentoring and edible landscape design work, plus a bit of gardening writing.

My latest way to create better soil is by adding biochar, made in a bespoke kiln.


Trevor Richards – Secretary – Kuala Lumpur
Civil engineering background and based overseas since 1988. Connected with biomass energy since 1999 and blogging on biochar since 2009 via BIG-SEA.

Helped establish ABE ( in 2012. Connected with the international biochar community and interested in all aspects of biochar environmental and industry development in NZ.


Damian Richardson – Auckland
I am in central Auckland. I read 2 papers in 2004, from the US and the UK Climate Taskforces. It sent my on a journey that kept me tuned to the scientific, economic and political aspects of the climate crises.

I am mainly interested in the scientific aspect, and the need for negative emissions. New Zealand’s largest city must get behind biochar.


Phil Stevens – Manawatu
Energy and carbon management with EnergyTS ( Permaculture tutor, incorporating soil-building and carbon farming techniques on a one-hectare lifestyle block (

Currently developing a social enterprise business model which would combine biochar production from forestry “waste” and use it to help remediate nutrient contamination in waterways affected by agricultural runoff.


Miles Pope – Pukekohe
Along with Jenny, Miles owns Soil Conditioner Products Ltd producing products used in agriculture from byproducts that would probably otherwise end up in landfill. Biochar has become one of our main ingredients in most products.

Having been involved in large scale agricultural land development and produce production I have seen first hand the change in products used over time for the betterment of the environment.


Matthew Priestley – Waimauku
Matthew is the director at Brotherwood Limited, a company providing professional arboricultural services. Matthew has worked as an arborist for 20 years and has a bachelors degree in microbiology and botany. He has a passion for the natural world, ecological design and regenerative practices. He has a special interest in fungi and soil diversity. He grows gourmet mushrooms, makes compost and produces biochar as part  of waste stream utilisation.

Based in Waimauku, NZ with his wife Sheena, 11yo son Joseph and 14yo daughter Isabella, they live alongside their food forest with flock of chickens and muscovy ducks 🌳 🐓 🦆 


Warrick Isaachsen – West Auckland
Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāi Tai Ki Tāmaki.
Together with BNNZ and partners, Warrick seeks to get New Zealanders excited about the positive impacts from biochar for their businesses and ecosystems, and for kiwis to feel empowered to create regenerative change through biochar.

From a spark for nature which started at the family horticulture business in West Auckland, Warrick seeks to contribute his experience in capital investment, engineering, project management and business to grow climate positive, value adding outcomes which honours people and planet.


Simon Day – Waiuku

* Biography to come


James McNally – Wellington 

* Biography to come