Environmental Services

Operating & maintaining regional sewers and wastewater treatment


Interceptor Services operates and maintains the large, intercommunity wastewater sewers (interceptors) and related facilities necessary to collect and transport wastewater from community sewer systems to wastewater treatment plants. This infrastructure includes nearly 640 miles of interceptors, 61 lift stations, 188 meter stations, and 18 rain gauge stations. Units include Interceptor Engineering, Interceptor Operations, Interceptor Maintenance, and Computer and Metering.

This unit operates and maintains the eight regional wastewater treatment plants in the Twin Cities area. Plant operations are carried out by eight business units – Administration, Maintenance and Security Services, Support Services, Incineration, Liquids, Solids, Southwest and East.

Technical Services

The Technical Services unit provides capital planning and administration services. It also provides engineering, drafting, and construction services that support the Council's maintenance and capital projects.

Environmental Quality and Additional Support Functions

  • Industrial Waste/Pollution Prevention - controls use of the public sewer system to ensure compliance with regulations and to protect Environmental Services and community facilities. This unit also promotes pollution prevention and provides technical assistance to reduce pollutants.

  • Analytical (Laboratory) Services - prepares an average of more than 111,500 analyses annually and 88 monthly reports that must be submitted to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency from all eight treatment plants.

  • Environmental Compliance - responsible for submitting applications for environmental permits, negotiating permit conditions, tracking permit and regulatory requirements, and monitoring regulatory developments of federal and state environmental programs.

  • Environmental Monitoring and Assessment - responsible for evaluating point-source emissions, site-specific air zones, and ambient air at and around Environmental Services facilities. The unit also monitors the water quality of regional rivers, streams, lakes, and wastewater treatment plant discharges.

  • Research and Development - conducts research and gathers information that assists in making informed decisions about current and future problems, treatment processes and methods for achieving air and water quality objectives, and the impact of agency actions on the environment.

  • Water Resources Assessment - provides technical assistance to local watershed management organizations and municipalities, and carries out a continuous program of research on the control and prevention of water pollution.

  • Water Supply Planning - responsible for maintaining a base of technical information and developing a water supply master plan for the region. It also maintains a water conservation toolbox and works with counties, cities, and townships to address local water supply issues.

General Manager's Office 

  • Administration - provides support for the Metropolitan Council's Environment Committee and the General Manager's office. This office also provides expertise for business administration, coordination of information, policy and procedure development and support, human resources, contracting and procurement services, and organizational improvement in Environmental Services. 

  • Financial Management and Revenue - provides budgeting, financial analysis, rate design and setting, financial negotiations, capital finance strategy and leadership in revenue generation and expense analysis for Environmental Services. Sewer Availability Charge (SAC) determinations, record keeping, rule making and community SAC reviews are done by this office. In addition, coordination, communication and leadership in MCES energy management are included.

  • Sustainability and Energy Support - develops and maintains a comprehensive and sustainable energy management program that results in the efficient use of energy and other resources. Coordinates work across the Council in developing and improving environmentally sustainable plans, policies and procedures for Council operations and implementing sustainability and stewardship strategies and directions from Thrive MSP 2040.