Project Little Oneroa

Is about working together to understand the problems and solutions for the Little Oneroa catchment.

All catchment residents may be eligible to apply for the on-site wastewater upgrade scheme that could provide the means for homeowners to borrow between $2,000 and $35,000 for the upgrade or replacement of their on-site wastewater treatment system if it meets specified criteria. They may also receive building and resource consent subsidies.

The cost of the upgrade would be covered via a loan from Auckland Council that is paid back through the property owners rates over a 15 year period.

A building & resource consent subsidy may also be available to property owners that are upgrading but do not want to take advantage of the retrofit scheme.
Project Little Oneroa are available to support catchment residents through the process and are planning on holding a public meeting where property owners can meet with the registered wastewater designers and other experts to discuss on Wednesday 29th March 6pm Waiheke Sustainability Centre.

Auckland Council accredited suppliers

Oasis Clearwater



Waiheke Independent Waste Water Engineer

CBC Wastewater

Little Oneroa Stream - Whats happening here?

Like too many waterways in Aotearoa the Little Oneroa Stream is polluted with E.coli bacteria. The Waiheke Community have been working to learn more about why the stream is polluted and what we can do to change that. Here is what we have found.

The Lagoon is currently unsafe for human recreational contact.

The main sources of contamination are

  • Poorly performing on-site waste water systems
  • Bird and dog faeces

Pollution levels fluctuate due to weather, tides & sand blocking the lagoons flow to the ocean.

These are natural occurrences.


There are 4 things we can all do to help

  • Don’t feed the ducks

Ducks breed to the amount of food available. Lots of food leads to lots of ducklings, and excessive breeding leads to large numbers of birds in one area. Because ducks defecate directly into the water, they can have a significant effect on water quality & the E.coli levels.

  • Use septic friendly products

Not all products on supermarket shelves are safe for your septic system or the environment. Anti bacterial cleaners, bleach, disinfectants & many other chemicals can kill the micro-organisms in your septic system, causing it to fail and potentially leach runoff into our waterways.

  • Care for your on-site waste water system

Regular maintenance (hi-tech systems needs a maintenance contract and frequent servicing) & 3 yearly pump outs will ensure your system is working effectively.  Conserving water by only doing 1 load of washing per day and spacing our showers are proactive steps you can take to avoid overloading your septic system.

  • Pick up after your dog

Dog faeces left on the ground wash into waterways, carrying E.coli and other  bacteria that can make people sick.

We can all make changes that will contribute to healthy waterways.

As a community we can reduce the pollution in the Little Oneroa Stream.

Little Oneroa Action Plan

Last November the Waiheke Resources Trust complied an Action Plan through a series of workshops attended by members of the community, Auckland Council & the Waiheke Local board with the aim of addressing the continuing pollution in the Little Oneroa Catchment.

The workshops were based on the Logical Framework Approach methodology defined as: a quality-based understanding of planning, based on a participatory and transparent planning process, aimed towards the needs of partners and target groups, in which the key elements of a project are agreed on step by step, in teams, with those concerned, and recorded transparently.

Download your copy of the draft Action Plan here. Email should you have any questions or feedback.

Become a Friend of the Stream

As a friend of the stream you will receive monthly updates on the project & upcoming events.

Become a Friend of the Stream here!

Ecoli & Waicare Water Testing

At present the stream is tested in two ways. First, through the Wai Care program that utilises locals to regularly test the ecology of the stream. The second is though expert testing provided by Auckland Council which tests for E-coli.

E.coli & Faecal Coliform bacteria indicate the presence of sewage contamination of a waterway and the possible presence of other pathogens including Campylobacteriosis, Cryptosporidiosis and Giardiasis. E.coli tests in excess of around 450 E. coli cfu/100ml water is deemed to be unsafe.

Auckland Council Ecoli testing is conducted weekly between November & July.

Historial Ecoli results can be found here.

Waicare test results can be found here.

Become a Citizen Scientist, volunteer as a water tester.

Project Little Oneroa Ecotanka Drink Bottles

Support Project Little Oneroa by purchasing an Ecotanka

800ml & 600ml $25  & Teeny Tanka's 350ml $20

Grab yours from the Sustainability Centre, Mako Street, Oneroa or from our Ostend Market Stall.

ECOtankas™ are high quality, long lasting, hygienic, solid stainless steel drink bottles.

Project Little Oneroa supports these United Nations Sustainable Development Goals