The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District plans to maintain water discharges from Lake Okeechobee at current rates.
The target flow for the Caloosahatchee Estuary remains unchanged at 3,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) as measured at Moore Haven Lock & Dam (S-77) located on the southwest side of the lake. The target flow for the St. Lucie Estuary remains at a seven-day average of 1,170 cfs as measured at St. Lucie Lock & Dam (S-80) near Stuart. Additional runoff from rain in the St. Lucie basin could occasionally result in flows that exceed targets.
“The lake remains high for this time of year,” said Jim Jeffords, Jacksonville District Operations Division Chief. “Wet conditions during our normal dry season tested the water management system in south Florida. Working with our state and federal partners, we’ve used any flexibility we could find in the system, but the lake level on July 1st was the highest for that date over the past 10 years.”
Today, the lake stage is 14.93 feet, up more than a foot since the lake hit its low for 2016 of 13.64 on May 17. The Corps will continue to monitor conditions and adjust flows as necessary.
“Conditions in both estuaries have shown some slight improvement,” said Jeffords. “This is primarily the result of drier weather in the area and the reduction in flows that we implemented last week.”
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.
Release no. 16-054