Educational Resources / Tours

Good decisions are based on knowledge. Our goal is to teach Olmsted County residents how to make the most of our resources through an understanding of how and why our Integrated Solid Waste Management System provides a proper place for waste. Effective waste education helps us all to become stewards of our environment.


Speaker Request Form

If you would like a representative from the Environmental Resources Department to speak at an event regarding garbage and recycling, please complete the request form below.

Visits are limited to groups located in Olmsted County. All speaker requests are subject to approval.

Facility Tours
Kids on a tour looking into the Olmsted Waste-to-Energy Facility's garbage pit

Find out how the Olmsted Waste-to-Energy Facility uses renewable biomass fuel (garbage) to produce energy for 30+ buildings. Visits to the Olmsted County Recycling Center Plus, Hazardous Waste Facility, and Compost Site can be included for tours scheduled during normal business hours. Group tours typically take about an hour and must comply with the tour guidelines.

Guidelines for Solid Waste Facility Tours

  • Tour groups must consist of at least eight people. If your group has fewer than eight people, please ask for a combined tour.

  • Tours are available Monday through Friday 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM by appointment. Call 507 328-7070.

  • Casual attire is recommended. Some of the processes involved are less than fragrant, so plan accordingly. 

  • Sturdy shoes (no flip flops) are required in all of our facilities. High heels are not allowed in the Waste-to-Energy Facility. 

  • All safety rules must be complied with at all times. Since these rules are site specific, they will be explained by the tour guide at the beginning of the tour. This may involve the wearing of hardhats and/or safety glasses. 

  • Visitors will walk through multiple levels of the Waste-to-Energy Facility. Stair-climbing is involved; however, an elevator is available as needed.

  • Children must be in first grade or older; this includes siblings. Chaperones must be provided by the participant in order to provide one adult for every five children under the age of 10, and/or one adult for every ten children age 10 and over. 

  • It is the responsibility of the chaperones to ensure respectful and safe behavior of all tour group members. 

  • No more than 25 people (including chaperones) can normally be accommodated for any single tour. It is possible through special arrangement, to accommodate larger groups. However, this service can only be provided when additional tour guides are available.

Request a Tour

Email or call 507-328-7070. You will need to provide the following information:

  • Preferred date
  • Preferred time
  • The group/organization's name & number of attendees
  • A group contact phone number and email address