Environmental Services inspections

We investigate and enforce environmental issues in Minneapolis. These include land, water, air and noise concerns.

Environmental concerns

Idling

Cars idling in traffic

Idling is illegal in Minneapolis

  • Cars and other gas or diesel-powered vehicles cannot idle more than three minutes except in traffic.
  • Buses, trucks and other diesel engine-powered vehicles cannot idle more than five minutes in a one-hour period.
  • Vehicle owners can receive a $200 fine per violation.

Exceptions:

  • Vehicles may idle when stopped in traffic.
  • An occupied vehicle with a sleeper compartment may idle during a rest or sleep period.
  • A passenger bus may idle a maximum of 15 minutes while non-driver passengers are on board.

See Chapter 58 - Idling

Noise and sound

garbage truck

 

Construction and demolition

  • We allow construction and demolition noise from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • After hours work requires a permit.

See After hours work

Garbage pickup

Garbage pickup noise is allowed 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. within 500 feet of a residential property.

Yard or snow maintenance noise

  • Use of power lawnmowers, trimmers, saws, leaf blowers or similar tools is allowed from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Use of snowblowers and snowplows is allowed anytime during an official snow emergency or within 24 hours of a snowfall of 1 inch or more.

Other sound

  • Outdoor amplified sound audible above the level of conversational speech at a distance of 50 feet likely requires a sound permit at any time. See Outdoor sound
  • Sound from a motor vehicle sound system or audio system:
    • Is illegal if clearly audible beyond 50 feet from where it is originating
    • Can be reported to 911 or the Crime Prevention Specialist in your precinct

Report a noise complaint

See Chapter 389 - Noise

Odor

smokestack

 

Odors are unlawful when:

  • Air contaminants migrate from the premises and
  • Are identified by an inspector to be above the threshold of violation at an adjacent property

See Chapter 47.150 - Odor

Spills

oil spill

 

Environmental Services will:

  • Respond to spills that are five gallons or less
  • Assist the Fire Department and Public Works for larger spills as needed

See Chapter 287.100 - Oil or gasoline spills

Wells and tanks

person drilling well
  • Contact Environmental Services about possible wells or tanks on your property.
  • Work with a licensed well contractor to have a well or tank removed. 

See Chapter 48.260 - Wells

Contact us

Environmental Services Information

Health Department

 

 

Minneapolis 311

 
 

Office hours

7 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Monday – Friday