Water-Related News

Lee County wants more water from lake

One year ago, water was pouring into Lake Okeechobee from the north and flowing out of the lake to the east and west. The releases were blamed for environmental damage, and contributed to a summer of troubling algae blooms on the Treasure Coast. This year, some counties in the region are in severe drought, and some are asking for Lake Okeechobee freshwater.

The County Coalition for the Responsible Management of Lake Okeechobee, St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee Estuaries and the Lake Worth Lagoon held their quarterly meeting Friday, June 2, at the Okeechobee County Court House to discuss this and other issues.

The dry season was 57 percent or 6.35 inches below normal in the 16 counties that comprise the South Florida Water Management District, officials said.

Lee County Commissioner Frank Mann said they have requested more freshwater releases from the lake. He noted algae blooms have popped up along the Caloosahatchee River.