Providing Excellent Service

A worker in the maintenance shop.24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the Environmental Services team is delivering critical services, tools, and resources to our customer communities and partners. We focus on work that makes a positive impact on the health and quality of life in our region, like expanding programs that help prevent sewer backups and overflows, monitoring chloride levels in regional waterbodies, and tracking the spread of COVID-19 in our communities through wastewater analysis. 

Ensure regulatory compliance

Our Laboratory Services team plays a pivotal role in ensuring the Met Council meets or exceeds environmental quality standards. In 2023, we analyzed 48,000 water and wastewater samples:  
  • 63% ensured our wastewater treatment plants met permit and process control requirements  
  • 16% supported our direct waterbody monitoring  
  • 11% supported external partners in their environmental monitoring of lakes, rivers, and streams 
  • 9% supported industrial pretreatment requirements  
  • 1% supported other internal Environmental Services groups 

Expand capacity for repairs, maintenance, and spill response

Met Council staff inspect interceptor pipes on a recurring schedule ranging from 1 to 15 years, depending on the material of the pipe. When a pipe fails and a spill occurs, our team is quick to respond and begin coordinating spill containment and correction – with a response time of 10-30 minutes during weekday working hours and 10-60 minutes after hours. As we expand system capacity, we increase our ability to serve the metro region and extend the promise of clean water to even more residents and businesses. 

Enhance accessibility

The Met Council is dedicated to increasing accessibility to information and committed to following Title VI recommendations so residents with limited English proficiency are informed in their own language and, where possible, about interpretation and translation services available to them. In 2022-2023 we put the tools in place to start to make that happen including:

  • Adding text in the five Title VI languages to all print materials, along with a number to call for assistance
  • Providing recorded messages in translation for use on project hotlines
  • Training field and communications staff in the use of interpretation services to communicate with residents with limited English proficiency
  • Asking all project managers to do a community analytics analysis to determine the common languages spoken in project areas and to translate essential materials into any language spoken by more than 5% of the population living in the project area

Engage in customer service

The Met Council was recognized by the American Public Works Association (APWA). APWA’s Minnesota chapter awarded the Harry S. Swearingen Award for Outstanding Achievement and Excellence in Chapter Service – Public Agency to Environmental Services for our committed service and positive impact to the chapter, and our value to the community.