Dr-Thakur-Bhattarai

Dr Thakur Bhattarai

Senior Scientist (Soil and Carbon) Carbon Link Limited Australia
Senior Lecturer (Adjunct) CQUniversity Australia

Academic Qualifications

  • PhD in Carbon Farming (specialised in soil and biomass carbon accounting) at the Centre for Plant and Water Sciences, Faculty of Science, Engineering and Health, CQUniversity, Rockhampton, Queensland, 4702, Australia, graduated in 2013.
  • MSc Natural Resource Management (Specialised in Agro-Forestry Systems) at the Faculty of Agriculture Engineering, Food Production and Rural Land Use, Cranfield University, United Kingdom (Academic Year: 2004-2005).
  • Masters in Arts (MA) Degree (specialised in Rural/Regional Sociology) at Tri-Chandra Multiple Campus, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu (Academic Year 2000-2002).
  • Bachelor’s Degree (BSc) in Forestry (specialised in forestry) at the Tribhuvan University, Hariyokharka, Pokhara. (Four-year program: 1995-1999).
  • Advanced Diploma in Human Resource Management at Greenwich London College, London, UK (Academic year 2006-7).

Research Income

  • Project Grand Total: $218,000. Funded by Meat and Livestock Australia and Resource Consulting Services. Project duration: Nov Oct 18-Jun 2020
    Project title: Construction and testing of the first commercial-scale scanning system (SCANS unit) for measuring soil carbon in the Australian red meat industry.
  • Project Grant total: $792,594 (MLA matching project: MLA/CL- 50/50%) for the soil health and soil C monitoring project. Sep 2017-Aug 2020.
    Project title: Enhancing grazing profitability through improving soil health.
  • Project Grant total: $200,000 (contribution from Carbonlink and CSIRO, $100,000 each). Project duration: March 2017-Feb 2019
    Project title: Soil C and properties measurement, mapping, and modelling methodologies
  • Project Grant Total: $998,450 funded by the Federal Government, under the Department for Industry, Innovation and Science.
    Project title: Commercialization of innovative soil C measurement technology in Australian Agricultural systems
  • Project Grant total: $82,000 (Funded by Meat and Livestock Australia and CQ Healthy Soil Groups) for emission management project in cropping and grazing country. Project duration: 2014-2015.
    Project title: Reducing GHG emissions (by 30%) from agricultural land (more focused on grazing management systems) and improving farm productivity by 10%
  • Project Grant total: $55,000 (funded by Federal Government’s Landcare Fund). Project duration: Jan 2013-Dec 2014
    Project title: Digging and assessing the soil health around Central Queensland
  • Project Grant Total: $50,000 (for developing a measurement-based soil C measurement protocol) funded by the Department of the Environment.
    Project title: Developing soil C measurement protocols in cropping land.
  • Project Grant total: $45,000 (funded by Grazing BestPrac, Rockhampton). Mar-Aug 2013.
    Project title: Compare carbon farming calculators in a number of grazing scenarios around QLD.

Major Scholarships

  • Australian Postgraduate Research International Scholarship for PhD at CQUniversity, Australia – total amount $96,500 (2008-2011).
  • CPWS International Research Scholarship from the Centre for Plant and Water Science, Rockhampton, Australia – total value $20,500.00 (2010-2012)
  • Marshal Papworth Awards (2004/5) at the British Agriculture Society for MSc at Faculty of Agriculture Engineering, Food Production and Rural Land Use, Cranfield University, UK – total amount £38,000.
  • United Mission to Nepal Scholarship for 4 years BSc Degree from 1995 to 1998 – total amount £8,000.
  • Dissertation Internships (for BSc research and thesis write up) (1998) awarded by the United Nation Development Programme (UNDP): value $5,500
  • Tribhuwan University’s merit awards for Intermediate in Science (1991-1993).

Affiliations

  • Member: Technical Working Group (Soil C methods under ERF) Department of the Environment, Canberra
  • Member: Healthy Soil Inc. Central Queensland
  • Member: Central Queensland Forester Association
  • Member: Nepalese Foresters Association
  • Member: Carbon Farmers of Australia
  • Member: Australian Institute of Agriculture Science and Technology
  • Member: Australian Society of Plant Scientists
  • Member: Environment Institute of Australia and New Zealand
  • President: Nepal Australia Connections
  • Member: Mountain Forum Global Network

Professional Experience

1. Senior Scientist (Soil and Carbon Specialist

Carbon Link Limited, Yeppoon, 4703 Queensland, Australia.

Adjunct Senior Lecturer/Research

CQUniversity Australia

January 2017 to Present

 

Major Responsibilities:

  • Develop project proposals for external research funding
  • Participate and contribute in the National Soil C Technical Group Meeting (in Canberra quarterly basis). The Technical Working Group is formed by the Department of the Environment to advise government for formulating and improving C methodologies
  • Lead existing research projects, particularly soil carbon, soil health, grazing management systems and precision agriculture
  • Process soil sample with prescribe protocols and make representative sample ready for routine lab analysis
  • Develop and optimize the soil scans systems for measuring soil organic carbon in the agricultural systems and explore non-invasive techniques for soil C measurement: mid-infrared (MIR), near-infrared (NIR) and visual near infrared (V-NIR) analysis
  • Collect, collate research data and information and evaluate and analyse data using appropriate statistical package and technologies (such as R Studio/Shiny R, Gen Stat, Unscramble statistical software, MS Access, SPSS and Sigma Plot)
  • Use soil coring rig for soil sample collection (with specific core diameter and depth) and store the sample in the prescribed environment for lab processing
  • Landscape/watershed data analysis using advanced database and GIS modelling
  • Organise regular field day, workshops, seminars and meetings and other extension techniques to keep well informed to farmers, industry partners, and NRM groups
  • Coordinate with partner organizations and clients, such as MLA, CSIRO, CQU, DAFF, lead farmers and stakeholders
  • Provide day to day advisory services on soils and pasture to farmers and stakeholders
  • Fully adhere to the organisational code of conduct, including the principles and practices of employment equity, ethical conduct and workplace health and safety.

2. Agricultural Scientist (Carbon Farming Specialist)

Central Queensland Healthy Soils Inc. Rockhampton, Queensland.

May 2013 to Dec 2016

 

Major responsibilities:

  • Undertake land resource surveys and land suitability assessments of designated areas to increase the knowledge and understanding of the land resources of the Fitzroy Region. This includes:
    • description, classification and interpretation of soil and types, landform, geology and geomorphic features, particularly in relation to landscape processes
    • Soil survey and mapping including the application of digital soils mapping techniques
    • Utilise field-based GPS technology, remote sensing techniques, digital soil mapping, geographical information systems (ArcGIS) and database management to assist in the capture, design, development, interpretation and delivery of land resource information.
    • Identifying sustainable land management options for soil management and develop decision support tools for profit maximisation
  • Develop and deliver coaching sessions to producers and landholders, more focus on ERF methodologies and grazing BMP to help them identifying improved practices which could help to sequester C and improving the long term profitability
  • Process soil sample with prescribe protocols and make representative sample ready for routine lab analysis as well as other non-invasive techniques: mid-infrared (MIR), near-infrared (NIR) and visual near infrared (V-NIR) analysis
  • Maintain effective communication with staff/colleagues, clients, stakeholders
  • Write proposals, attract external funding and publish papers in the peer-reviewed journals

3. Trainer/Coach (Carbon Farming)

Meat and Livestock Australia Farm 300 Project

A joint program between Meat and Livestock Australia, CQUniversity and  Grazing BestPrac, Central Queensland.

June 2014 – Jan 2016

 

Major responsibilities

  • Conduct meeting (fortnightly and monthly) with producers, graziers, NRM and Landcare groups for developing sustainable grazing and cropping management program, more focus on soil health, grazing management systems, animal production, animal welfare and increase overall land productivity
  • Develop and deliver coaching sessions to farmers and landholders including NRM groups, more focus on soil monitoring, land suitability analysis and identifying best land management options for a number of ERF methodologies to help them identifying improved practices which can help to sequester C and improving the long term profitability
  • Support producers and landholders in implementing best management practice and strategies
  • Organise farm visit and present case studies with producers about ERF methodologies including soil C, biodiversity offsets and environmental planting
  • Participate in Field Days and deliver speech particularly on carbon farming, carbon credits, soil health, plant biodiversity and livestock management
  • Support and develop an organization-wide collaborative approach to the development
  • Develop and maintain relationships with external delivery partners and organizations
  • Participate in the national and international conferences and sharing workshops

4. Research Fellow (Academic Casual – Soil Carbon)

Institute of Future Farming Systems, CQUniversity, Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia.

June 2012 to May 2014

 

Major responsibilities:

  • Coordinate soil carbon trails and experiments around Central Queensland
  • Organise soil survey and field trips across Queensland for soil sample collection
  • Prepare soil survey design and sampling protocols using Australian’s mapping tools and guidelines (use government’s available maps and data with field survey data for mapping)
  • Use soil coring rig for soil sample collection (with specific core diameter and depth) and store the sample in the prescribed environment for lab processing
  • Process soil sample with prescribe protocols and make representative sample ready for routine lab analysis as well as other non-invasive techniques: mid-infrared (MIR), near-infrared (NIR) and visual near infrared (V-NIR) analysis
  • Assist to professors for preparing lecture notes and presentation about soil conservation and land management, GIS, Remote Sensing and Aerial Photography classes
  • Support undergraduate and postgraduate students in research trials and lab analysis
  • Write proposals, attract external funding and publish papers in the peer reviewed journals
  • Develop and maintain relationships with external delivery partners and organizations

5. Technical/Research Officer

Various projects at Centre for Plant and Water Science, CQUniversity, Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia.

From Nov 2009 – Aug 2012

 


 

Project – Quantifying carbon footprints in the Bundaberg region (particularly in horticulture farms), Queensland – a vehicle towards sustainability.

 

Major activities:

  • Develop carbon accounting protocols, conducted interview with farmers and growers,
  • Collect field data, data management and analysis, and
  • Conducted workshops and seminars to disseminate the findings of the project

 

Project: Carbon sequestration potential of different land-use systems for climate change mitigation and sustainable regional development

 

Major Activities:

  • Review methodology for carbon sequestration, and conduct baseline nutrient analysis
  • Organise several workshops, seminars and meetings with stakeholders at various levels

 

Project – Factors affecting adoption of land management practices that have water quality benefits in the GBR Catchments

 

Major Activities:

  • Prepare questionnaire and organised interviewed with growers, Landcare groups, industry partners, government authorities, CSRIO, and concerning stakeholders
  • Collect soil and plant sample form different land management systems for quality analysis
  • Assist in analyzing samples in the lab
  • Organise data in the data management systems (Access) and analysed data using appropriate statistical software and techniques
  • Present the findings of this research in the meetings/seminars
  • Prepare written report and also published papers

 

Project: Effect of green waste biochar addition to the agriculture soil for examining soil health, carbon sequestration and plant growth

 

Major Activities:

  • Using different rate of biochar, several scientific experiments were conducted in control environments (glass-house) and in the agriculture farm for examining crop yield, soil nutrition and carbon sequestration
  • Organise data collection, storing, management, analysis and reporting
  • Publish a paper in an international peer-reviewed journal

 

Postgraduate Student and Centre Representatives for Centre for Plant and Water Science to deal with a wide range of issues raised by researchers, industry partners, students and academicians.

 

Major Activities:

  • Organise meeting with industry partners, staff and students about research issues
  • Present the voice of students, staff and customer to the university management committee and initiate to resolve consulting all parties
  • Reporting and other duties as required

6. Environmental and GIS Officer

Directorate of Environment, Royal Borough of Kingston, London, Kingston upon Thames, KT1 1EU, United Kingdom.

October 2005 to Dec 2006

 

Major responsibilities:

  • Plan and implement projects to support the sustainable management of land and the management of soils, as identified in regional strategies and plans.
  • Provide GPS and GIS data capturing, storing, managing and mapping supports
  • Maintain a high level of technical and legal knowledge within all areas of sustainable land management
  • Analyse, stored and managed GIS and RS data in the archive and updated regularly
  • Support Council’s everyday office requirements of GIS
  • Assist senior technical and managerial staff to prepare information to respond to inquiries from agencies, environmental groups, the press, and others

7. Research and Teaching Assistant

Faculty of Agricultural Engineering, Food Production and Rural Land Use, Cranfield University, Bedfordshire, UK.

Dec 2004 to May 2006

 

Major responsibilities:

  • Provide tutoring, deliver lecture and presentation in land management, soil conservation and GIS modelling and mapping
  • Involve in developing syllabus, course context, assignments, field practical and examinations
  • Assist to professors for preparing lecture notes and presentation about soil conservation and land management, GIS, Remote Sensing and Aerial Photography classes
  • Support undergraduate and postgraduate students in research trials and lab analysis
  • Maintain a positive, helpful, constructive attitude and working relationship with students and university employees, and division clients
  • Conduct research and validation of data contained in the spatial and relational databases used to provide map services and applications
  • Provide technical and administrative assistance for the division’s GIS department
  • Present research findings in workshops and seminars

8. Community Forestry Officer

Bagmati Integrated Watershed Management Project (funded by the Union of European Communities), Kathmandu, Nepal.

Jan 2001 to Sep 2001

 

Major responsibilities:

  • Implement, monitor, and evaluate agriculture programs that encompass a range of activities such as natural resource management, agribusiness, and agricultural institutional development,
  • Provide technical support for rangers and technical staff for the implementation of forestry and agricultural promotional programs in the Project Districts
  • Organise seminar and workshop on agricultural extension program and its sustainable management
  • Use GIS to develop land suitability classification for settlements, agriculture land and conservation areas
  • Manages administrative support functions including organizational and human resources, budgeting, and procurement

9. Training Officer

Community Based Economic Development (CBED) Project (Funded by Canadian International Development Agencies – CIDA and implemented by CECI).

Aug 1999 to Dec 2000

 

Major responsibilities:

  • Develop training sessions and workshops on agro-forestry, climate mitigation and adaptation process in the regional project areas
  • Conduct vegetation assessment, resource/ecological inventory, soil and biomass inventory including environmental impact assessment as required,
  • Prepare sustainable integrated watershed management program
  • Organise training and coaching sessions to the field staff and community groups
  • Coordinate with government and non-government staff and provide technical support
  • Maintain all health and safety protocols and procedure with standard
  • Organise several national and international seminar and workshop
  • Other financial and office management responsibilities

10. Head - Publication and Communication Wing

Self-help Environmental Awareness Camp (SHEAC), at Institute of Forestry, P O Box 203, Pokhara.

February 1997 to April 1998

 

Major responsibilities:

 

Co-ordinated with governmental and non-governmental organisations, organised several environmental trainings, best land management practices and environmental campaigns, communicated agriculture and forestry related scientific findings to the wider communities through seminars, published monthly environmental newsletter (as an editor).


Major Papers Published in Peer-Reviewed Journals

  1. Pudasaini, K., Bhattarai, T., Walsh, K. & Ashwath, N. (****). Biochar effects on rhizobial activity, growth and survival in a loamy sand soil at two levels of moisture content. Manuscript submitted to the The Soil Biology and Biochemistry Journal.
  2. Pudasaini K., Walsh K.B., Bhattarai T.Ashwath N., (****). Effects of different biochar particle sizes on the physical-hydraulic properties of three different soils in Central Queensland. Manuscript submitted to the Journal: Geoderma.
  3. Bhattarai, T., Rana, E.B., Skutch. M., and Midmore, D. (2018): Estimating the costs of forest carbon per ha: Comparative study between project and sub-national/watershed level forest carbon projects. (Under the review process in the Journal of Climatic Change (in press).
  4. Bhattarai, T., Skutsch, D. Midmore and H. Shrestha (2017). “Carbon measurement: An overview of forest carbon estimation methods and the role of GIS and remote sensing techniques for REDD+ implementation.” Journal of Forest and Livelihood 13: 1.
  5. Bhattarai, T., Swain D. (2016) Understanding cattle preferences using a combination of global positioning systems and remote sensing. Presented in the 2nd Digital Future Conference 2015
  6. Pudasaini K., Walsh K.B., Ashwath N., Bhattarai T.(2016). Effects of biochar addition on plant available water of a loamy sandy soil and consequences on cowpea growth. Acta Horticulturae. 2016 (1112), p.357-363.
  7. Bhattarai, T., Alexander, M. and Walsh, K. (2016). “Assessment of soil organic carbon in grazing systems in Central Queensland”, presented in the 8th Carbon Farming Conference in Albury, organised by the Carbon Farmers of Australia, from 7-10 July 2015.
  8. Pudasaini K., Walsh K.B., Ashwath N., Bhattarai T.(2016). Effects of biochar addition on plant available water of a loamy sandy soil and consequences on cowpea growth. Acta Horticulturae. 2016 (1112), p.357-363.
  9. Dhakal, S., Bhattarai, T., Dhakal, S. C (2016). Financial Feasibility of the Biogas Plant Installation in the Farm Level in Terai Region. International Journal of Economics, Finance and Management Sciences. Vol. 4, No. 3, 2016, pp. 153-156, doi: 10.11648/j.ijefm.20160403.18.
  10. Karna, Y. K., Y. A. Hussin, H. Gilani, Bhattarai T., Bronsveld, M. Murthy, F. M. Qamer, B. S. Karky, X. Aigong and C. B. Baniya (2015). “Integration of WorldView-2 and airborne LiDAR data for tree species level carbon stock mapping in Kayar Khola watershed, Nepal.” International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation 38: 280-291.
  11. Palada, M, Bhattarai, T., Roberts, M, Baxter, N, Bhattarai, M, Kimsan, R, Kan, S & Wu, D 2014, ‘Increasing on-farm water productivity through farmer-participatory evaluation of affordable microirrigation vegetable-based technology in Nepal’, Journal of Applied Irrigation Science, vol. 49, no. 2, pp. 133-143.
  12. Bhattarai, T., Rana, E.B., Skutch. M., and Midmore, D. (2012): The carbon sequestration potential of community-based forest management system in Nepal. The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Vol 3, Issue 2, p 231-251.
  13. Pudasaini, K, Ashwath, N, Walsh, K & Bhattarai, T. P. 2012, ‘Biochar Improves Plant Growth and Reduces Nutrient Leaching in Red Clay Loam and Sandy Loam’, Hydro Nepal: Journal of Water, Energy and Environment, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 86-90.
  14. Delwar, A., Rolfe, J., Makiela, S., Bhattarai, T.P, Julie Mann and Gail Tucker (2011): Regional sustainability: developing service optimization model for the mining towns in Queensland, a case of Moura, QLD.
  15. Bhattarai, T., Thapa T. (2006). “Agroforestry in Kulekhani for community livelihood improvement” quarterly journal, Jaladhar, BIWMP, Nepal, Vol. 2, Issue 3.

Manuscript under preparation

  • Understanding cattle preferences using a combination of global positioning systems and remote sensing. Presented in the 2nd Digital Future Conference 2018 (Manuscript is under preparation for peer reviewed journal, Sensor?).
  • Factors affecting in maintaining soil fertility and increasing C sequestration in soil in agricultural systems in Central Queensland? (Manuscript is under preparation for peer reviewed journal, Australian Journal of Soil Research.)
  • Is sequestering carbon in soil in grazing systems a profitable option for sustainable grazing business in Central Queensland? The economics of grazing land ….for an open access agriculture journal – the Plant, Soil and Environment.
  • Comparison between different non-invasive sensing technologies for assessing carbon pools/pasture in grazing systems. For the open access journal: Sensor.
  • Comparison of techniques on soil C accounting. For the Journal of Carbon Balance and Management

Major national and international conference and workshops attended as a speaker

S.N. Name of Workshop Date Place Organized By
1 Technical workshop on improving the methods for soil carbon measurement in grazing systems and cropping land 13-14 May 2016 Canberra Department of the Environment
2 Advanced Leadership for Scientists Workshops 12-13 April Melbourne Liquid Learning Group Pty Ltd, Sydney
3 Key Speaker – Eighth the Carbon Farming Conference 2015 7-10 July 2015 Albury Carbon Farmers of Australia
4 Science communication workshop for the delivery of scientific services, including communication and promotion 24 May 15 Rockhampton Department of Science and Innovation
5 Workshop/training on soil classification, and mapping for precision agriculture and carbon credits using GIS and Remote Sensing (Speaker) 1-5 March 2015 Brisbane Department of Environment and Resource Management, Australia
6 International conference on Soil and Rural Livelihood in changing climate (Key Speaker) 27-30 Sep 2014 Dhulikhel, Nepal Norwegian University and Agro-Forestry Foundation
7 CFI Workshop: The Carbon Farming for Graziers; Creating Opportunities for Trading Carbon Credits 5-7 March 2013 Rocky, Queensland CQUniversity, Australia
8 Queensland Landcare Conference 2012 20-23 Sep 2011 Ayr QLD Landcare
9 A Special Symposium: State of Environmental Impact Assessment in Australia 12-13 A, 2012 Canberra Australian National University
10 International Carbon Expo Conference 7-9 Nov, 12 Melbourne Carbon Market Institute with Several Collaborators
11 Workshop/training on landscape carbon sequestration mapping with GIS and Remote Sensing 1-5 Oct 2012 Brisbane Department of Environment and Resource Management, Australia
12 Climate Adaptation and Action in 2012: Sharing Knowledge to Adapt 26-28 June 2012 Melbourne CSIRO
13 International Symposium: Benefiting from Earth Observation – GIS and Remote Sensing 4-6 Oct 2011 Kathmandu International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD)
14 Opportunities and challenges of agriculture in changing carbon economy 3-4 Sep 2008 Brisbane Australian Institute of Agriculture Science and Technology
15 Workshop on GIS and Remote Sensing in Land Management and Conservation 22-27, May 2005 UK Cranfield University, Silsoe, UK
16 International Conference on Community Engagement “Experience & Innovation”. 25 – 29, Sep 2001 Thailand Regional Forestry Training Centre, Thailand
17 International Seminar on Watershed Management 3-4 Oct 2001 Vietnam Gov. of Vietnam