Water-Related News

SFWMD board approves plan to increase flow to Caloosahatchee River

From Eco-Voice, Inc.:

The South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) will change one of the policies which often results in dry season cutoff of fresh water flow to the Caloosahatchee River (dry conditions of the tributaries feeding the Kissimmee River), and do additional modeling to determine water quality impacts of moving a limited amount of water from the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) to Lake Okeechobee to prevent or delay water rationing while providing some water to the estuary.

The proposed flow is only a portion of that needed for the health or recovery of the estuary but would help prevent algae blooms in the upper river and keep a patch of tape grass near the Caloosahatchee National Wildlife Refuge (at I-75) and Lee County's Manatee Park alive until the C43 reservoir is constructed. The reservoir is awaiting Congressional authorization and funding of Washington's 50% cost share. The amount of water proposed to be returned to the Lake would be about the amount now wasted to tide from the Water Conservation Areas because it cannot flow south to Everglades Park.

The SFWMD Board approved the staff recommendations by 9-0 vote.

Fact sheet from SFWMD: "Strategies for Improving the Caloosahatchee River & Estuary"