Corps continues low-level discharges from Lake Okeechobee

Published Jan. 22, 2015


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District will continue low-level discharges to the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie Estuaries as part efforts to manage water levels in Lake Okeechobee.

The Corps plans to begin another seven-day pulse release tomorrow (Jan. 23).  The target flow for the Caloosahatchee during this period is an average of 1,500 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at W.P. Franklin Lock & Dam (S-79) near Fort Myers.  The target flow to the St. Lucie is 300 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at St. Lucie Lock & Dam (S-80) near Stuart.  Flows at one or both locations could occasionally be exceeded by runoff from rain that accumulates in the Caloosahatchee or St. Lucie basins—those flows will be allowed to pass through structures as necessary.

Today, the lake stage is 14.92 feet.  It is currently in the Operational Low Sub-Band as defined by the 2008 Lake Okeechobee Regulation Schedule (LORS).  Under current conditions, LORS authorizes the Corps to discharge up to 3,000 cfs to the Caloosahatchee and up to 1,170 cfs to the St. Lucie. 

Under LORS, the Corps strives to manage the lake between its preferred range of 12.5-15.5 feet.  The Corps desires the lake to drop closer to the lower end of the preferred range by the start of wet season, which traditionally occurs in late May.  The Corps will monitor rainfall and lake levels and adjust flows as necessary.

For more information on water level and flows data for Lake Okeechobee, visit the Corps’ water management website at


John Campbell

Release no. 15-009