13 June, 2021
9:00 am –

Sustainability and Science Showcase 2021

Hosted at the Queensland Museum on Sunday 13 June 2021, the Sustainability & Science Showcase highlighted the latest scientific research and present ideas for saving our precious planet.

Sustainability and Science Showcase 2021

 What is it? 

Hosted at the Queensland Museum on Sunday 13 June, the Sustainability & Science Showcase highlighted the latest scientific research and present ideas for saving our precious planet. Visitors could: 

  • Find out why being sustainable matters and what practical tips you can try 
  • Hear from scientists and community sustainability experts 
  • Discover Queensland citizen science projects 
  • Learn about the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and pledge to do your bit to address global challenges like climate change. 

The Sustainability & Science Showcase celebrated the inaugural global Sustainability Research and Innovation Congress 2021 (SRI2021) which took place in Brisbane 12-15 June to foster sustainability knowledge and practice around the world. 

Exhibitors and Activities 

Visitors had the chance to meet some of Queensland’s leading organisations, researchers and businesses who are at the forefront of research and community education. There were displays and exciting hands-on activities for visitors to take part in. 



Inspiring speakers shared their insights on using innovations in science and sustainability to protect our planet. Watch the recordings here

Forum topics 

Forum 1: Creating a healthy environment for your local flora and fauna to thrive 

Learn how to protect our local ecosystems, care for our native wildlife, and create an eco-friendly backyard. 
Hear from Professor Hugh Possingham, Dr Tobias Smith, Associate Professor Celine Frere and Claire Bickle. 

Forum 2: How to reduce waste in your home 

From preventing and recycling food waste to re-purposing unused goods, our experts will share practical tips and solutions to reduce your waste to landfill and explain how you can be a part of a circular economy. 
Hear from Professor Peta Ashworth, Mark Barthel, Ned Heaton, and Yasmin Grigaliunas. 

Forum 3: Australia’s progress on Sustainable Development Goals including climate action 

Urgent action is required to successfully achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. In particular, hear from experts who are working towards effective and just climate action in Australia and learn how you can respond to climate change in your own community. 

Hear from Professor Susan Harris Rimmer, Dr Paul Bertsch, Dr David Rissik and Naomi Edwards. 


Professor Hugh Possingham 

Queensland Chief Scientist  

Professor Hugh Possingham is a conservation scientist and mathematician who has held positions in the university, public and not-for profit sectors. He completed his PhD at Oxford University in 1987 as a Rhodes Scholar and prior to being appointed Queensland Chief Scientist he was the Chief Scientist at The Nature Conservancy, a global conservation organisation operating in 79 countries. A winner of two Eureka Prizes, his most significant contribution to conservation was the co-development of Marxan, software first used to rezone the Great Barrier Reef, and now used in almost every country in the world to inform the expansion of their marine and terrestrial protected area systems. He has supervised over 200 honours students, doctoral candidates and postdoctoral fellows. His research group has always had a strong focus on bringing mathematical and statistical approaches to solving conservation problems. He is an avid birder and citizen scientist, and he is currently on the board of directors of BirdLife Australia. Locally, he is Patron of the Friends of Sherwood Arboretum and President of the Friends of Oxley Creek Common. 

Dr Tobias Smith 

Founder of Bee Aware Brisbane & researcher at the University of Queensland 

Tobias Smith is a bee researcher, educator and stingless bee keeper based in south-east Queensland. As a researcher Tobias is based at the University of Queensland. Tobias’s research interests focus on stingless bee biology and ecology, wild bees in agricultural landscapes and native bee diversity and ecology. As an educator Tobias presents native bee and pollination workshops to community groups and schools, primarily through his business Bee Aware Kids. As a beekeeper Tobias keeps native stingless bee hives around south-east Queensland and northern New South Wales, and helps to manage many more as a stingless beekeeping consultant. 

Associate Professor Celine Frere 

Animal Ecologist and ARC Future Fellow at University of Sunshine Coast 

Associate Professor Celine Frere obtained her PhD in biology from the University of New South Wales and has held post-doctoral positions at the University of Queensland, a lectureship at the Centre for Ecology and Conservation and the University of Exeter, UK, and a Research Fellowship at the University of the Sunshine Coast. Associate Professor Frere is an empirical biologist with a primary research interest in animal behaviour and genetics. She has published widely including on lizards, giraffes, cetaceans, porpoises, koalas and kangaroos. 

Claire Bickle 

Horticulture and sustainability expert 

Claire is a qualified Brisbane based horticulturist well known for her enthusiastic presenting, writing, broadcasting and educating on her favourite topics; gardening, chooks, children and all things related to sustainability and nature. She has written for many publications and companies over the years and you can currently read her regular articles about these topics in Earth Garden and Good Organic Gardening Magazines. Rocky Point ‘Better Earth Secrets’, Australian Organic Ltd ‘BUD Organic Club’ and BCC ‘Live for Less’ articles. Claire is a regular presenter of her weekly gardening talkback segment on ABC Radio Brisbane. On her 2acre garden in the western suburbs of Brisbane Claire takes pleasure in creating, enjoying and working her eclectic productive yet ornamental garden that blends in with the surrounding native habitat. She has nearly 30 years experience in the horticultural/sustainability industry ranging from, retail, teaching at tafe, radio, journalism/writing, presenting and taking gardening tours. 

Professor Peta Ashworth 

Chair in Sustainable Energy Futures at The University of Queensland 

Professor Peta Ashworth OAM is the Director of the Andrew N. Liveris Academy for Innovation and Leadership, and Chair in Sustainable Energy Futures at The University of Queensland (UQ). Professor Ashworth brings over thirty years’ experience working in a range of senior management, consulting and research roles. Prior to joining UQ in 2016, Peta worked as a consultant to industry, as Research Group Leader at CSIRO, and in senior executive roles for the Body Shop. Professor Ashworth is a globally-recognised expert in the fields of energy, communication, stakeholder engagement, and technology assessment. For almost two decades, Peta has been researching public attitudes toward climate and energy technologies, including wind, carbon capture and storage (CCS), solar photovoltaic, storage and geothermal. An accomplished speaker and facilitator, Professor Ashworth is actively involved in building energy literacy more broadly both within Australian and globally, and regularly provides input to policy briefings, think tanks, as well as educational events for the benefit of the broader community. 

Mark Barthel 

Chief Operating Officer, Stop Food Waste Australia and Special Advisor, Fight Food Waste CRC 

Mark joined the Fight Food Waste CRC team as a Special Advisor in August 2019, where, as part of his role, he has been researching how to help Australian families to prevent food from being wasted at home, saving time and money in the process. In January 2021, Mark was appointed as the Chief Operating Officer at Stop Food Waste Australia, a new organisation partnering with federal, state and local government, the food industry and the food rescue sector to lead the delivery of Australia’s National Food Waste Strategy and its target to halve food waste by 2030. Mark has run award-winning behaviour change campaigns, like Love Food Hate Waste, which is being used in a growing number of countries, states and cities, including four Australian States. Throughout his career, Mark has worked with the senior teams of some of the largest food and grocery businesses in the world, including Tesco, Sainsbury’s, M&S, Cooperative Food, Walmart, Woolworths, Goodman Fielder, Lion, Nestle and Danone, focusing on reducing food waste and food insecurity, and transforming surplus food and food waste into new upcycled food products and ingredients, unlocking new value from food that was destined for landfill. 

Ned Heaton 

Young eco-entrepreneur and founder of The Turtle Tribe 

Ned Heaton, 13, of Tamborine Mountain is on a mission to get plastic toothbrushes banned to help reduce ocean plastics, so started his own bamboo toothbrush business when he was 11. Over the last two years he’s been a guest speaker for Sea Shepherd, The Queensland Government and The Moreton Bay Foundation. He’s won the Youth in Business ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’, the global ‘Be the Change’ awards ‘Changemaker of the Year’, Best short film at the Cicada Film Festival, Best Litter Prevention Plan from the Brisbane City Council, and more… He’s appeared on radio and TV both in Australia and the US, and is currently supplying retailers, dentists, resorts and Aged Care facilities with over 40,000 bamboo toothbrushes a year. Ned’s company, The Turtle Tribe, helps educate and empower Australians to reduce their plastic waste and ultimately reduce ocean plastics, which are still increasing by 8 million tonnes a year. To help Aussies make the switch, Ned has pledged to give away 1 million bamboo toothbrushes, calling them a ‘catalyst consumable’ that remind us twice a day, every day, to reduce our plastic use. Ned’s latest project is a crowdfunded children’s book to educate other young kids about the issue of ocean plastics. 

Yasmin Grigaliunas 

CEO & Co-Founder of World’s Biggest Garage Sale 

Award-winning Yas Grigaliunas is the CEO and Co-founder of the World’s Biggest Garage Sale (WBGS), an entrepreneur of impact and a circular economy pioneer in Australia, driving this industry forward by innovating, collaborating, connecting and mobilising multiple stakeholders towards a shared vision, all while providing social good. Having recently launched Australia’s first Circular Economy Precinct, WBGS are activating the circular economy and resource recovery of dormant goods for good, powered by their purpose to provide meaningful employment and pathways for disadvantaged youth. Through an omnichannel resale retail presence, including events, pop ups and an online recommerce platform, Yas is a passionate advocate of the Sustainable Development Goals, delivering outcomes and outputs to support the Global Goals. Energetic, authentic and an expert of execution, Yas is a master at enrolling talent, communicating long-term vision, and inspiring people along the journey. Yas and her organisation are living proof that you can provide a positive impact for people, planet and purpose. 

Professor Susan Harris Rimmer 

Director of the Policy Innovation Hub and Theme Leader at the Griffith Climate Action Beacon 

Professor Susan Harris Rimmer is the Director of the Griffith University Policy Innovation Hub (appointed July 2020). She was previously the Deputy Head of School (Research) in the Griffith Law School and prior to joining Griffith was the Director of Studies at the ANU Asia-Pacific College of Diplomacy. With Professor Sara Davies, Susan is co-convenor of the Griffith Gender Equality Research Network. Sue leads the Climate Justice theme of the new Griffith Climate Action Beacon. She is a non-resident Research Associate at Chatham House in the UK. Sue was named one of 100 global gender experts by Apolitical 2018, and one of 20 Queensland Voices Female Leaders in 2019. 

Dr Paul Bertsch 

Science Director, Land & Water at CSIRO 

Dr Bertsch is the Deputy Director-Science of Land and Water BU in Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO. Dr. Bertsch has championed inter- and transdisciplinary research approaches that integrate land, water, ecosystems, cities, social and economic sciences, environmental contamination and toxicology, earth observation, and climate adaptation to address the grand challenges facing Australia and the global community. Prior to joining CSIRO in 2013, Paul was the Director of the Tracy Farmer Institute for Sustainability and the Environment and Professor of Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology, University of Kentucky, Lexington. He is the Georgia Power Professor of Environmental Chemistry Emeritus at the University of Georgia, Athens and is an Honorary Professor of Environmental and Soil Chemistry at the University of Queensland. Paul has more than 30 years of experience in environmental and sustainability science and is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Society of Agronomy (ASA), the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA), and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). He is also a lifetime National Associate of the United States’ National Academy of Sciences (NAS). 

Dr David Rissik 

Climate change adaptation and environmental management expert at BMT Environment Australia 

David has significant experience in disaster, climate change and ecological risk assessments and associated management. David has a PhD in marine ecology and has worked in government, the university sector and in the private sector. He is a Non-Executive Director of Green Cross Australia which is focussed on increasing community resilience to extreme events and climate change. David was Deputy Director of Australia’s National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility, President of the Society of Wetlands Scientists Australasian Chapter and Non-Executive Director of Pittwater Environment Foundation. David has delivered a number of climate risk and adaptation projects in Australia for all sectors. 

Naomi Edwards 

Community engagement expert and coastal advocate 

Naomi Edwards is a respected community engagement expert and advocate for Australia’s coast. She champions new ways of engaging communities in important matters. In 2015, she co-founded Intrepid Landcare, which has transformed how young people engage and lead in Landcare. Her more recent work has involved (almost) completing a PhD in social science that investigated the daily dilemmas of coastal professionals who work in coastal management. Naomi joined Change last year to manage a regional strategic communications program to upscale community-based fisheries management in the Pacific. Naomi is also co-chair of National Surfing Reserves, which drives effective coastal advocacy for Australia’s special surfing sites. On a more adventurous note, Naomi loves adventure motorcycling and has passed the highest-motorable pass in the world within the Indian Himalayas. 

Join us

13 June, 2021
9:00 am –
Queensland Museum
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