The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District has adjusted the amount of water flowing from Lake Okeechobee and the W.P. Franklin Lock (S-79) to the Caloosahatchee Estuary, on Friday, January 25.
The new release schedule began on Friday, January 25, with a constant release of 700 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at W.P. Franklin Lock (S-79) near Fort Myers. The St. Lucie target will remain at zero cfs. Additional runoff from rain in the local Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie basins could occasionally result in flows that exceed one or both targets.
"We are coordinating closely with our partners at the South Florida Water Management District and estuary scientists to provide some flows to the Caloosahatchee Estuary in an effort to maintain a favorable salinity balance," said Lt. Col. Jennifer Reynolds, Deputy Commander for South Florida.
Today’s lake stage is 12.32 feet above sea level, which is in Operational Beneficial Use Sub-Band. During the past week, lake levels receded 0.02 feet, with a 0.40 foot drop in the past 30 days.
Previous Release Decisions:
Beginning on Friday, January 11, a seven-day pulse release schedule began on with a target flow averaging 850 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at W.P. Franklin Lock (S-79) near Fort Myers. The St. Lucie target remained at zero cfs.
Starting Friday October 5, the Corps began a gradual 3-week transition to reduce flows from Lake Okeechobee by implementing 7-day pulse releases with an average target flow for the Caloosahatchee Estuary of 2,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at W.P. Franklin Lock & Dam (S-79) near Fort Myers, and zero cfs for the St. Lucie Estuary as measured at St. Lucie Lock & Dam (S-80) near Stuart. Average target flows to the Caloosahatchee were stepped down to 1,500 cfs on October 12, and 1,000 cfs on October 19, while the St. Lucie target remained at zero cfs.
The Corps had maintained the 7-day average pulse release schedule of 1,000 cfs to the Caloosahatchee Estuary since October 19.
For more information on water level and flows data for Lake Okeechobee, visit the Corps’ water management website at http://www.saj.usace.army.mil/Missions/CivilWorks/WaterManagement.aspx.