Due to the Covid-19 situation, Carlsmith Ball's personnel are primarily working remotely to serve our clients.

However, our offices remain open. Office hours and contact phone numbers by location are available on the "Locations" link of our home page.

Photo of Puananionaona (Onaona) P. Thoene
Partner / Honolulu

Puananionaona (Onaona) P. Thoene


Onaona Thoene is a Partner in the firm's Honolulu office and a member of its Real Property, Environmental, and Business & Corporate practice groups. Her practice also focuses on land use and administrative law. Onaona received a J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, William S. Richardson School of Law with certificates in environmental law and native Hawaiian law, and a B.B.A., cum laude, from the University of San Diego. She is fluent in Hawaiian.

Corporate Matters

  • Assisted clients in the payoff and refinancing of a 73 million dollar loan for a renewable energy facility.
  • Assisted clients with due diligence for the purchase and sale of commercial properties and development of utility scale solar projects throughout the State.

Environmental, Administrative and Land Use

  • Assisted client with research regarding non-covered source, covered source, and PSD permits.
  • Assisted client with research regarding enforcement of HRS Chapters 342D, 342H and 342J claims.
  • Board of Land and Natural Resources: Assisted clients with various matters related to renewal of a lease for state land, promulgation of agency rules, conservation district use permit, and contested case hearing.
  • State of Hawaii Land Use Commission: Represented clients in connection with amendments to district boundary applications for the development of utility scale solar energy facilities, and defense of an environmental impact statement.
  • Honolulu Planning Commission: Represented client in connection with a special use permit application for development of a utility scale solar energy facility.
  • Department of Planning and Permitting: Assisted client with conditional use permit application for an agricultural energy facility.
  • County of Hawaii Planning Commission: Assisted client with renewal and amendment of special permit to operate a quarry and recycling facility.
  • Kauai Planning Commission: Assisted client with special management area permit application proceedings.
  • State of Hawaii Department of Health: Assisted clients with response to notices of violation, and requests for contested case hearings.


  • Selected by attorney peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America: Ones to Watch 2022 for Administrative/Regulatory Law, Business Organizations (including LLC's and Partnerships), Energy Law, Environmental Law, and Land Use and Zoning Law; previously listed in 2021 for Energy Law, and Environmental Law
  • Selected for inclusion in 2022 Hawaii Super Lawyers Rising Stars for Land Use/Zoning; listed since 2020
  • Chair, Environmental Council, State of Hawaii
  • Co-Editor-in-Chief, University of Hawaii Law Review, Volume 35
  • Staff Writer, University of Hawaii Law Review, Volume 34
  • CALI Excellence for the Future Award, State & Local Government, Fall 2012
  • Alston Hunt Floyd & Ing Award for the Best Environmental Law Topic for the Second Year Seminar Paper entitled House Resolution 910 "Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011": One Step Toward Economic Efficiency, Two Steps Back for Global Warming, Fall 2012
  • Starn O'Toole Marcus & Fisher Scholarship for Excellence in Contracts and Contributions to the UH Law School Community, Fall 2011
  • McCorriston Miller Mukai MacKinnon Scholarship, Fall 2011


  • Hawaii State Bar Association
  • Prince Kuhio Hawaiian Civic Club
  • Hawaiian Islands Land Trust, Oahu Island Advisory Council


  • State v. Fields: Should a Declarant's Professed Memory Loss at Trial Satisfy the "Unavailability" Requirement Under Hawaii's Confrontation Clause, with Andrea Ushijima, 34 U. Haw. L. Rev. (2012)
  • Maybe She's Born With It? Maybe It's Gene Therapy?, with Kiyomi Labuguen, American Journal of Bioethics, Fall 2003