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Water supply and treatment

Discover the answers to common questions about Tauranga’s water supply and treatment.

Where our water comes from

Our city’s drinking water supply is sourced from three spring-fed streams – the Tautau, Waiorohi and Waiāri. These streams pass through several kilometres of land before it reaches our water treatment plants. It therefore needs treating before it is suitable to use and drink. We remain committed to managing, maintaining and improving our drinking water supply catchments, as well as stream flow health.

Tauranga water sources map

Water supply areas for Tauranga treatment plants

How we treat our water

We work hard to deliver a safe and reliable water supply that meets New Zealand’s drinking water standards.

Microfiltration technology is used to treat our water. This process uses millions of tiny straws which are less than 1mm across that have tiny holes (0.2micron). They trap and remove dirt and tiny micro-organisms like giardia and cryptosporidium which can make you sick.

Using microfiltration treatment reduces the amount of chemicals needed to treat the water. A small amount of chlorine (1 litre per 1 million litres of water) is used to provide an extra layer of protection against potential contamination within our pipe network. Once treated, water is stored in one of 19 reservoirs before travelling through a series of underground pipes across our city to reach your taps.

Where we treat our water

Tauranga City Council runs three water treatment plants. Joyce Road treats water supplied from the Tautau Stream, while the Oropi treatment plant looks after water taken from the Waiorohi Stream. Joyce Road can process up to 33 million litres a day and Oropi up to 40 million litres per day.

Our new processing plant along the Waiāri stream was commissioned in December 2022. The plant uses water from the pristine Waiāri and has the capacity to supply drinking water to up to 35,000 households. The plant will mainly service the Pāpāmoa coastal strip and provide a backup for Western Bay of Plenty District Council’s Te Puke water supply in future.

On average we use 44 million litres of water per day. In summer this can rise to 58 million litres per day.

Find out more about the Waiāri Supply Scheme

Waiari treatment plant Oropi treatment plant

Joyce Road treatment plant

Waiāri, Oropi and Joyce Road treatment plants

Water Treatment Quality Policy

Our aim is to provide and maintain the most efficient and safe water treatment network for all customers at an affordable cost.

Our water treatment staff and management are committed to:

  • Creating a work environment that is both productive and enjoyable, whilst achieving measurable quality results.
  • Complying with relevant legislation, consents, regulations and policies to provide water quality that meets the Drinking-Water Standards, national governance requirements, consent conditions and council’s levels of service.
  • Using the best practical processes to ensure continued quality of water is provided and identifying opportunities for improvement.
  • Being responsive to customers and stakeholders, while continually providing a consistent, friendly and professional service.
  • Ensuring resources are available, both infrastructure and personnel, to deliver our quality objectives.

We shall provide a framework that:

  • Regularly reviews objectives with the view of improving the effectiveness of the quality management system.
  • Enables staff to take ownership of the day-to-day work practices.
  • Provides a safe work environment where continuous improvement is encouraged.
  • Considers quality, environmental impact and sustainability of our work alongside the operational and financial aspects.
  • Educates staff on the importance of water supply and their role in the quality management system.
  • Manages change and embraces opportunities for continual improvement.

Tauranga City Council, Private Bag 12022, Tauranga, 3143, New Zealand |Terms of use|Privacy statement|Site map

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