JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (July 5, 2012) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District has begun another release of water from Lake Okeechobee as part of ongoing efforts to reduce salinity (saltwater content) in the Caloosahatchee Estuary.
The new water release began today (July 5). The Corps is making the release in a pulse-like manner to mimic a rainfall event. The target flow to the Caloosahatchee Estuary for this release is an average of 300 cubic feet per second (cfs) over a 10-day period, as measured at W.P. Franklin Lock and Dam (S-79) east of Fort Myers.
The Caloosahatchee is dependent on occasional fresh-water releases from Lake Okeechobee during dry conditions to offset high salinity in the estuary. The releases also provide circulation of water to prevent stagnation which can lead to algal blooms.
Today, the lake stage is 12.01 feet, and has risen over the past month. The lake is currently within the Beneficial Use Sub-band of the 2008 Lake Okeechobee Regulation Schedule (2008 LORS). The Corps and partner agencies will continue to closely monitor and assess system conditions, and may decrease releases if local basin runoff contributes to flows.
Release no. 12-055