Our Communities

Our Communities


MDU Resources Group is committed to safety and health in the workplace and in the communities where we do business. Safety metrics related to our businesses can be found in the reports under the environmental tab.

Safe natural gas pipeline operation

Operating a safe natural gas pipeline system requires diligence and the proper tools. This is a sample of the precautions taken at our companies:

  • Cathodic protection. This applies an electric current along a steel pipeline to protect against corrosion.
  • Rectifier inspection. We inspect corrosion rectifiers every two months to ensure they are adequately protecting the steel pipeline system. All aboveground facilities are checked for atmospheric corrosion every three years.
  • Patrol. We patrol pipeline facilities to look for changes to exposed piping, as well as areas where excavation activity may have taken place.
  • Leak survey. We use highly sensitive instruments to check annually for leaks on distribution lines in business districts and every four years in non-business districts. We conduct leak surveys on transmission lines annually and instrument leak surveys in populated (Class 3) and high-consequence areas twice a year.
  • Pipeline marker survey and inspection. This survey ensures that pipeline markers are in place to notify the public of a pipeline in the area.
  • Integrity management. We conduct indirect surveys on transmission pipelines in high-consequence areas. Based on findings, we conduct direct examinations in areas where there are indications of potential issues.
  • Contractor education. We send a letter annually to contractors to remind them about digging safely and calling for line locates. Local offices also provide training for contractors on digging around natural gas facilities.
  • Operator qualifications. All employees who perform work on our natural gas system undergo training and testing to ensure they are qualified to perform tasks associated with their jobs.
  • Continual surveillance. Our employees continuously watch for anything that should be addressed, and they either fix the problem or report it to the appropriate department for resolution.
Electrical and transmission distribution lineworker safety

MDU Construction Services Group is a founding and active member of the OSHA Electrical Transmission & Distribution (ET&D) Partnership. Since the partnership’s inception in 2004, members of MDU Construction Services Group’s management team have been involved with it in a number of areas, including the executive, steering and various task teams. The partnership is a formal collaboration of industry stakeholders, working together to improve safety for workers in the electric line industry. It is one of only a few national partnerships between employers and OSHA.

ET&D Partnership goals include:

  • Analyze accident and incident data to identify common causes for fatalities, injuries and illnesses suffered by linemen, apprentices and other appropriate job classifications.
  • Develop recommended best practices for each identified cause.
  • Develop implementation strategies for each best practice and promote these strategies among the partners.
  • Identify training criteria for foremen, general foremen, supervisors, linemen and apprentices, including training to create industry culture change to place value on safety and health.


Economic and volunteer impacts

MDU Resources makes a positive economic impact in a number of ways in the communities where it does business. The compensation it pays to its employees; the federal, state and local taxes it pays; the charitable donations it provides; and the infrastructure and equipment investments it makes are among the ways the company positively affects the economy.

MDU Resources also supports and encourages the innumerable contributions our employees make in their communities, from organizing, volunteering at, participating in and fundraising for charitable organizations to fixing up an in-need neighbor’s home.

Charitable giving through the MDU Resources Foundation

MDU Resources is proud of its record of supporting qualified organizations that enhance quality of life. Its philanthropic goal is to be a “neighbor of choice.” The MDU Resources Foundation was incorporated in 1983 to support the corporation’s charitable efforts. It has contributed more than $38 million to worthwhile organizations.

In addition to foundation donations, MDU Resources’ companies contribute directly to charitable organizations through various donations and in-kind contributions.

The MDU Resources Foundation is funded annually by contributions from each of MDU Resources’ business units based on the profitability of the companies. In all instances, the contributions are made only from stockholder funds.

The foundation contributes only to institutions, organizations and programs recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as qualified recipients of foundation contributions. Generally, contributions are restricted to organizations qualified as tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. We also contribute to tax-exempt organizations such as cities and their political subdivisions, such as park districts.

Primary consideration is given to charitable institutions, organizations and programs within the geographic areas where MDU Resources’ companies conduct business. Generally, no consideration is given to private individuals or to athletic, labor, fraternal, political or lobbying organizations, or to regional or national organizations without local affiliation.

The foundation supports the “one gift for all” concept in fundraising campaigns such as those conducted by the United Way or similar umbrella organizations. Participation by a charity in a United Way or other federated fundraising campaign does not necessarily preclude consideration of funding from the foundation.

Contributions to local, state, regional or national organizations, specific employee recognition and matching grant programs, scholarship programs, most United Way contributions, and contributions within the context of MDU Resources’ “headquarters city” policy are the primary responsibility of the foundation.

Post-secondary education is a high priority for the foundation. It maintains two separate scholarship programs. One program is exclusively for dependents, grandchildren and spouses of eligible employees. The other program consists of scholarships established at numerous institutions of higher education. In all instances, the foundation’s sole responsibility is funding the scholarships. No company personnel are involved in determining scholarship recipients under either program.

The foundation also matches employees’ and corporate directors’ personal contributions to educational institutions with a contribution equal to 100% of their contributions between $50 and $750. In 2020, employees contributed $29,300 to qualified education institutions, and the MDU Resources Foundation’s match was $17,270. Since the program began, educational institutions throughout the United States have received $929,451.

The foundation provides matching gifts for employee volunteerism. The foundation provides a grant of $750 to charitable organizations at which an employee volunteers 25 hours or more. Organizations are local 501(c) organizations in which the employee is an active volunteer providing services in the areas of civic and community activities, culture and arts, education, environment, and health and human services. In 2020, employees reported volunteering 7,237 hours. The foundation contributed $77,000 to charitable organizations as a result of employees’ volunteer efforts. Since the program began, charitable organizations throughout the United States have received $336,000.

The MDU Resources Foundation also generally funds these areas of corporate philanthropy:

  • Civic and community activities. The foundation funds programs that create opportunities and meet the needs of local communities.
  • Culture and arts. The foundation has had a long-standing interest in culture and the arts. It seeks to promote positive youth development through contributions to art funds and councils, museums, theaters, libraries and cultural centers.
  • Education. Given the importance of education in building strong individuals, families and communities, the foundation supports private secondary and higher education institutions, education development foundations, economic education programs and scholarships.
  • Environment. The foundation funds organizations that promote the wise use of resources without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
  • Health and human services. Recognizing the critical role of quality and accessible health care and human services, the foundation supports national and local health and human services agencies, hospitals, youth agencies and senior citizen organizations.

Additional information about the MDU Resources Foundation can be found at www.mdu.com/foundation.

Pandemic response support

The MDU Resources Foundation made special contributions, beyond its normal 2020 donations, to a variety of organizations to support coronavirus relief efforts. The foundation made contributions to 215 organizations that were involved in supporting their communities as COVID-19 infections were beginning to rise in early 2020.

Company donations

In addition to charitable contributions made through the MDU Resources Foundation, MDU Resources’ business units and companies regularly make charitable donations and donations to the communities where they do business. Examples of these efforts abound: donating equipment and employees’ time for various community projects; donating used equipment to rural fire departments; donating products and materials for park construction projects; and much more. Some MDU Resources companies also allow employees to take up to eight hours of paid time off for volunteer efforts.


MDU Resources emphasizes its commitment to ethical conduct in its operations, as well as respect for the rights of all individuals, in its conflict minerals policy.

The policy defines our commitment to determine the use, source and origin of tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold minerals in our manufactured products, and document the process we use in making such determinations. MDU Resources encourages suppliers to advocate and adhere to our philosophy of sourcing minerals from socially responsible suppliers, including conflict-free mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo and countries that share its border, to help ensure we do not unintentionally support armed conflict in the region.

MDU Resources regularly evaluates our current line of manufactured products, or products contracted to be manufactured, for conflict minerals. Our Conflict Minerals Report on these findings also can be found on our website.


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