Friday, May 1, 2015

Andy Reid at the Sun Sentinel: more Lake Okeechobee water releases on the way

For some pleasant, relaxing reading you might want to consider this and this. The Lake Okeechobee water levels are very important because water enters the lake at times (from rainfall and the river flows from the north) much faster than the water can be released. So the decision to release water, how much and when, is a highly educated guess but also very necessary.

Andy Reid mentions below the condition of the "troubled dike". The dike he is referring to is the Herbert Hoover Dike which surrounds the lake. At a certain water level, and I'm not certain what that is, the dike is almost sure to fail at some location. I encourage everyone to read this article and learn more about this situation; it's crucial to our everyday life here in south Florida. 

Here is an excerpt from the article by Andy Reid:
     More Lake Okeechobee water will be drained east and west to ease South Florida flooding threats, despite concerns about spreading a toxic algae bloom, federal officials announced Thursday.
     A spike in rainfall is boosting water levels and increasing the strain on the lake's troubled dike, considered one of the country's most at risk of a breach.
     Draining nearly 2 billion gallons a day of lake water out to sea, as proposed, lessens the pressure on the erosion-prone dike.
 [emphasis added] But that draining also wastes water that could replenish the Everglades and help restock South Florida drinking water supplies.
     In addition, lake discharges to the east and west can worsen water quality problems in the normally salty fishing grounds near the coast.