Wastewater Treatment

The City of Red Wing has one wastewater treatment plant and one Industrial Pre-Treatment plant. The Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant provides wastewater treatment of residential, commercial and industrial wastewater. Currently, the Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant treats between 2.5 and 3 million gallons of wastewater per day. The solids extracted from the wastewater are heat-treated and the biosolids are applied on farmland as a liquid fertilizer.

The Industrial Wastewater Pre-treatment Plant provides wastewater treatment for S B. Foot Tanning Company, the Solid Waste Boiler Facility and other local companies.

Both plants are managed and operated by Public Works Department with a staff of four operators, one lab technician, and one facility manager.

Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant

The wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) is located at 1020 East Fifth St. this plant treats all the wastewater generated by the entire city, including residential, commercial and industrial wastewater. The system is a trickling filter biological facility with micro-organisms doing the actual waste strength reduction. This biological treatment is augmented with mechanical solids handling and numerous fluid pumps that assist the process.

The water is released to the Mississippi River after treatment. The WWTP is permitted by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) and Federal Environmental Protection Agency. They set standards for quality of treatment that are monitored continuously and reported to the MPCA monthly. This facility has been in operation continuously since 1960.

View the 2010 Whole Effluent Toxicity Test Results (PDF)

Industrial Pre-treatment Plant

The City of Red Wing owns and operates an industrial pretreatment facility located at 1877 Bench St. This facility processes 300,000 to 400,000 gallons per day and discharges that flow into the city sewer system to be sent to the municipal plant on Fifth Street for final treatment. The flow entering this plant is primarily the wastewater from the S.B. Foot Tannery with contributions from several other businesses located on Bench Street.


In May 2023, the City of Red Wing partnered with Verily Life Science to analyze wastewater solids for infectious disease through the WastewaterSCAN program. This program analyzes samples from municipal wastewater treatment plants across the United States to get a picture of disease occurrence at a community population scale. The changes in the concentrations of these disease markers in wastewater can tell us the rates of disease in the community. The samples are currently analyzed for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID), Influenza, Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), Human Metapneumovirus, Mpox (monkey pox) and Norovirus. Samples are collected three days a week and results are available within 48 hours. Results for the Red Wing Wastewater Treatment Facility can be found here