Hauraki District Sustainable Living Info

Access the Learning Guides


Hauraki District Council is a new member of the Sustainable Living Programme (Future Living Skills). The Council want to encourage you to sign up  to use the fantastic free resources available through this programme.

Enviro Matters

Keep up to date with environmental news at Hauraki District Council - there's an Enviro Matters page set up on the Council website. 

Waste minimisation

We have a strong interest in reducing waste throughout the district. We’ve recently created a waste minimisation working party to focus on ways to reduce our waste throughout the district, at home and work.

The nationwide Sustainable Living Programme is just one initiative we’ve signed up to, so we can help you reduce your environmental impact, save money and live out the five Rs: ‘Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose, Recycle’.

The Eastern Waikato Waste Management and Minimisation Plan sets out the targets and goals surrounding waste minimisation that we are working toward.

Rubbish talk

Head to our website to find out more about our rubbish and recycling services, where you’ll also find out more about what items can be recycled. Our aim is to help you understand both what can be recycled and to give you some easy tips about the best way to do it, such as cleaning items before putting them in the recycling bin.

On the farm

The Hauraki District has large farming and forestry industries. If you want to dispose of triple-rinsed agriculture and forestry sector plastic containers, there’s some great information about Agrecovery on our website. Agrecovery is an organisation that safely disposes unwanted agrichemicals and also recycles empty containers and drums.


For certain household or business waste, such as e-waste, Waihi has an E-waste recycling depot where electronics can be recycled.

Ditching your old phone?

Did you know you can donate your old mobile phones and help preserve our environment? The Council is accepting all your old mobile phones, regardless of condition, make or model, to pass on to the RE:Mobile Phone Recycling Scheme. So, pop your old phone into our service centres in Paeroa, Waihi and Ngatea year-round. The proceeds from the RE:Mobile phone recycling scheme will be donated to charity.

Paeroa Re-use Centre

A project is currently underway, led by some passionate members of the Hauraki Community, to establish a re-use centre in Paeroa. This will provide an opportunity for employment, education and a place for the community to drop off unwanted items others may want to re-purpose or re-use.

This is a great initiative and will contribute to reducing the amount of stuff going to landfill in our district as well as foster a culture of reusing rather than disposing.

Starting young

We support many initiatives that encourage student learning and action in sustainability and waste minimisation our district’s schools.

Many of our schools have signed up to the Enviroschools programme which helps schools commit to a long-term sustainability journey by taking action as they learn.

Schools can also sign up to receive the Zero Waste Education programme, which provides resources for educating children about sustainability and waste.

Paper4Trees is another initiative schools can take part in, combining both waste minimisation and tree planting by encouraging schools to recycle paper and cardboard. School’s recycling efforts are then rewarded with native trees or plants.

Hauraki District Mayor John Tregidga opened a can of worms recently with his new Mayoral worm farm initiative to offer state-of-the-art worm farms to every Waihi school. The aim of the initiative is to teach children about recycling waste and reducing the amount of rubbish being sent to landfills, as well as encouraging kids to help the environment around them and get out in nature.



Water care

Making a splash

We’ve put together some great advice for conserving water in our homes, gardens and out on the farm.

'Save our drains for rain' by avoiding pollution

Water supplies in Hauraki

Waste water - where it goes from your sink and toilet

Climate Change Initiatives

The Hauraki District is involved with many climate change initiatives including:

  • A sea level rise study for Thames and Hauraki Plains, NZSeaRise (Victoria University of Wellington, GNS Science, NIWA);
  • Sea level rise, housing and insurance, Victoria University of Wellington research;
  • Local authorities and community engagement on climate change adaptation, Otago University research;
  • Resilience of the Waikato economy to natural hazards, Massey University and m.e research (National Science Challenge);
  • Liaison with Deep South Challenge, which enables New Zealanders to adapt, manage risk and thrive in a changing climate by connecting science with society, through its programmes - recently reported nationwide.

 Urgent action

Council recently decided to take urgent action on climate change. The Extinction Rebellion Waihi Group asked Council at a recent Community Services and Development Committee to declare a climate change emergency for the Hauraki District and establish a citizen’s assembly. The committee requested staff report back to council so it could make a decision.

In the 31 July, 2019, meeting, Council resolved to recognise the urgency of addressing climate change to support a greater mobilisation of resources and accelerate the climate change programme that Council had already committed to through its 2018 Long Term Planning process. Hauraki district Mayor John Tregidga said the word ‘urgency’ best described the approach council needed to take, rather than declaring an emergency. Read more: Hauraki district to take urgent climate change action.

Getting around


Cars are essential for most journeys with the District, but have you considered sharing the commute or shopping trips to save money and reduce emissions? 

For travel north to Thames or south to Tauranga, consider long-distance coach services.  InterCity has regular bus services from the Marshall Street, Paeroa, bus stop to Thames, Tauranga, Auckland and other centres.

If you’re keen to keep fit, try taking your bike! The popular Hauraki Rail Trail mostly attracts visitors, but locals use it too. Bikes can be hired, if you'd like to try before buying one. Maybe get a pedal electric-assisted bike?

In schools and community

See the waste minimisation section above.

Some schools are 'Enviroschools' with students and staff taking action as they learn

EcoQuest Education Foundation has a local Field Centre -  a focus on ecology, restoration, evironmental policy and sustainability.

Access the Learning Materials

Click here to access our online learning materials.

Become a Course Facilitator

Click here to apply to become a Sustainable Living course facilitator.

Existing course facilitators, log in here

Tip: Petrol at over $2 a litre?
Time to become a fuel-efficient driver or try some other transport? Ideas available in our Travel guide.