The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District has increased the amount of water flowing from Lake Okeechobee to the Caloosahatchee River.
The new target flow from the lake to the Caloosahatchee Estuary is 1,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at W.P. Franklin Lock (S-79) near Fort Myers. There are no target releases for the St. Lucie Estuary, although runoff from the St. Lucie Canal will continue to pass through the St. Lucie Lock as needed.
"Based on the current conditions, we have an opportunity to increase flows from the lake in preparation for changes in seasonal forecasts," said Lt. Col. Tom Greco, Jacksonville District Deputy Commander for South Florida. "As a result, it will also provide benefits to the Caloosahatchee Estuary."
The release is being conducted in accordance with the 2008 Lake Okeechobee Regulation Schedule (LORS), the master plan for water management of the lake. Under the LORS, the Corps strives to keep the lake level between 12.5 and 15.5 feet. Today, the lake stage is 14.47 feet.
The Corps will closely monitor the releases and adjust flows as necessary to balance the competing needs and purposes of Lake Okeechobee. Public safety remains the Corps’ top priority.
For more information on water level and flows data for Lake Okeechobee, visit the Corps’ water management page at the Jacksonville District website:
Release no. 13-005