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Lake Okeechobee water levels?

esteroestero Posts: 2,041 Captain
Maybe I don't understand how the lake drainage works but why can't they allow the lake to only get just so high all the time? Don't wait until it is way over filled and start dumping millions of gallons of water all at once. Start letting water out a little at a time all year if the lake is rising. Once it gets so high it automatically starts to drain off water through an overflow..

Just because you’re  Offended  Doesn’t mean you right!



  • cinookdudecinookdude Posts: 23 Greenhorn
    Quit making sense you will confuse the experts! We had to wait 3 years for a boat lift in our Cape Coral canal due to Manatees according to the Army Corps our lift would have an impact on them yet in a couple week span of their releases they have killed fish, sea grass that the manatees need, and have countless people who will not return to our area! Once again thanks and great job Army Corps of Engineers and water management !
  • GriffinGriffin Posts: 26 Greenhorn
  • cinookdudecinookdude Posts: 23 Greenhorn
    You evidently knew who I meant but thanks for the spell check.
  • etommy28etommy28 Posts: 311 Deckhand
    most of the time there is water flowing, but recently more is coming in from the Kissimmee and rain than is being pumped out.
  • Water flows into Lake O, three times as fast as it flow out!

    Get the picture? You have to act in advance to avoid a catastrophe. Add that to the fact that many levees are being rebuilt and they have to hold water lower for that work than when its completed.
  • testerman28testerman28 Posts: 1,329 Officer
    a good read

    Billions of gallons of polluted water are flowing into the St. Lucie River, the Indian River Lagoon and the Caloosahatchee Estuary from Lake Okeechobee.

    The environmental damage is massive.

    Every time a wet event hits Florida, such as the hurricanes of 2004-5, or simply several nontropical thunderstorms such as last October, the lake rises very rapidly 3-4 feet within days — threatening the Hoover Dike and the communities south of the lake.

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has no options. They must reduce the water level in the lake in case of another wet hurricane, common even in October like hurricanes Wilma and Isaac.

    The Corps has no options because after wet and deadly hurricanes early last century, at the request of the state, the Corps studied the average size of the lake and designed a dike to surround it. The Corps also made a fateful engineering decision to cut off the natural flow way from the lake to the downstream Everglades and dump it more “efficiently” to the east and west estuaries.

    That decision was made more than 60 years ago and decades of money was spent to build that water management dream of the day. Today, this system is disastrously outdated and it is our turn to rebuild it to meet modern needs.

    This is an outline of what needs to be accomplished IF periodic massive drainage into the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee is to be ended:

    A) Far more storage must be constructed north of the lake to prevent high levels in the first place, and far more land must be acquired south of the lake to allow water storage and cleansing so the estuary dumps can be safely redirected to the Everglades and away from the estuaries.

    B) Before any southward redirection can be done, the following must occur:

    1) A five-mile bridge must be built on the Tamiami Trail to let the huge water flows released from the lake enter the traditional flow ways in the park.

    2) The eastern dike in Water Conservation Area 3B must be strengthened to prevent leakage or the area can never be used as it was supposed to be used.

    3) The barriers between water conservation areas 3A and 3B must be broken, removed, pierced — whatever term is most accurate and cost effective.

    C) Farms and cities everywhere must clean their pollution before they release water to any of our incredibly valuable waterways.

    If the state and the federal government don’t embark on a plan that is far more expensive than what we can afford as a state, then the almost too regular discharge of billions of gallons of polluted water will haunt us long into the future.

    These are tall orders, but think for a moment before we continue to rail against the Corps’ decision to lower Lake Okeechobee to protect the integrity of the Hoover Dike.

    The governor’s reduction in the ability of the South Florida Water Management District to pay for much more than operating costs does not help.

    Everything on my “must do list” represents one week of the Afghanistan War expenses.

    Everything on my “wish list” is obtainable.

    Our congressional delegation has significant power in Congress. Our governor and the Florida commissioner of agriculture are very persuasive with our Legislature even in times of recession.

    Despite the need to reduce the incredible national deficit, don’t you think man-made disasters like those threatening our rivers and the Everglades ecosystem are worthy of national and state investments?

    Nathaniel Reed started his career in the family real estate and hotel business in Florida from which his concern for the environment steered him in public life. He has served six Florida governors and two presidents in many positions, including terms as chairman of the Florida Department of Air and Water Pollution Control, and Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior for Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Beyond his government service, he helped found 1000 Friends of Florida and has served as both president and chairman of the board of the organization. He currently or has served on the boards of the Atlantic Salmon Federation, Natural Resources Defense Council, National Geographic Society, Yellowstone National Park, Everglades Foundation and Hope Rural School.
  • 2) The eastern dike in Water Conservation Area 3B must be strengthened to prevent leakage or the area can never be used as it was supposed to be used.

    The Corp of Engineers is so stupid, the essential pilot project for the levee strengthening of #B is certainly the three mile levee modification going on at Site One Impoundment. The worst design possible is resulting in a project that will end up costing over $20 million dollars per mile of levee. If you tried to make it less cost effective you could not do it!

    The Corp ignored a SFWMD solution that could have cost as little at $2 million per mile!

    This is the kind of crap that drives me crazy.

    Or how about structures 335 A And B designed to push flow under that proposed Tamiami bridge. Built in the early to mid 90's for about $6 million dollars and never used yet, never to be used in the future.

    How does this stupidity get by the average intelligent person?

    Or Modified Water Deliveries to Everglades National Park 8.5 Sq mile flood control and levee. This one cost about $50 million, finished in 2004 with a double cost over-run, done only for political reasons instead of just removing illegal homesteads by former mariel refugees, and will just sit for another 10 years at least before anything is ever used.
  • Pucker FactorPucker Factor Posts: 875 Officer
    Water flows into Lake O, three times as fast as it flow out!.

    To the original question, this is your answer. I actually heard today from the Lt Colonel that it is 6 times as fast flowing in as opposed to capacity for exit.
  • FloridaODFloridaOD Posts: 4,258 Captain
    An outline of conversations with Art Marshall-

    The original southerly shore of the Lake is about nine feet above sea level. Water flowed south from there.

    Let the Lake flow, as a general policy.("Flow"image,to be defined, being key defining system ,the lake currently 'Flows'....via man made compartments-Caloossa hatch et al)

    Restore the Everglades Flow Way to the extent possible. Sheet Flow Breadth & Depth Rain Machine
    Trigger ( small 'trigger' relative to large 'gun' )

    Remain mindful of the Human/Everglades well being interface well being of humans connected to well being of the Everglades "Can never do one thing"
    (2013 note:which after all, the basis for world wide recognition, political driver for the 'need' for Everglades System Restoration)

    'Projected' Everglades System area population 'estimates' as the figures relate to planning assumptions, decisions.

    Even in the midst of abundant rainfall,water resources-possible stress and lack

    natural system health,attributes,function, nature based recreation, individual connections to the natural system in the face of real need to 'balance' "Competing" interest.
    Hunters are present yet relatively uncommon in Florida :wink
  • To the original question, this is your answer. I actually heard today from the Lt Colonel that it is 6 times as fast flowing in as opposed to capacity for exit.

    I stand corrected, 6 times now, three times as fast once they fix the culverts.

    The lake will never be properly managed, its just doesn't work without a Southern Discharge route and Big sug has prevented that.
  • Renagade69Renagade69 Posts: 1,234 Officer
    Why do we have to take their water? Plug the spillways off and let the dykes spill over. Thee water will work its way through Florida till it finds a home.They have had enough time to figure it out but do not care enough to. Its time to end the pollution. The EPA should fine them so much per day until they figure out how to stop dumping the pollution. The water in front of my lot is terrible. There is two spillways that dump in the Saint Lucie River North Fork, Gordy Road and c-24 canal. The small river is all fresh water already. I get a 20ppm on my salinity meter. The city water here has more salt in the water. STOP IT ALREADY. :(
    Hells Bay Estero Bay Boat and Hells Bay Marquesas
  • monkeybusinessjrmonkeybusinessjr Posts: 380 Deckhand
    Well all the pollution would just run into the everglades. The water is just too nutrient rich when if flows in this fast no matter where it flows out.
  • When they channelized the Kissimmee river basin, they lost most of the upstream storage. now it all goes to the Lake "O"
  • monkeybusinessjrmonkeybusinessjr Posts: 380 Deckhand
    Send the water south? Not so fast.....


    Pollution is killing Everglades, Miccosukee warn
  • ryanpryanp Posts: 25 Greenhorn
    Hey all -- new member here. I live on the Caloosahatchee in the LaBelle area, and the amount of flow into the river is crazy. It's making fishing nearly impossible with the coffee color water and debris. I've been out 10-15 times without a bite, and often see fish floating. It's kind of sad really.
  • Fly baileyFly bailey Posts: 4 Greenhorn
    What a sad situation. I have a house in the Ft Myers area and vacation Florida often. I also love the environment and all types of water sports. It's clear to me the politicians, ACoE and big AG are criminals. It's kinda like the school yard bully, until you punch them in the mouth they will continue to bully. Eventually the people in the Caloosahatchee and St Lucie river basins will tire and take matters into their own hands.
  • monkeybusinessjrmonkeybusinessjr Posts: 380 Deckhand
    So what would they do if they were taking matters into their own hands?
  • So what would they do if they were taking matters into their own hands?

    If you could, what would you do?
  • Renagade69Renagade69 Posts: 1,234 Officer
    Weld the locks shut. That is what I would do if I could.There problem should not be ours. They have had enough time to correct the issue. It has been an ongoing issue for many years. Let is flood. They may fix it then or hopefully let it flow through the center of the state like it would naturally. Since big sugar took over with their wealth of money buying policy we have no chance other than welding them shut.
    Hells Bay Estero Bay Boat and Hells Bay Marquesas
  • Pucker FactorPucker Factor Posts: 875 Officer
    Consider opening up the Phosphorus Rule for review.
  • CaptTaterCaptTater Posts: 20,096 AG
    Who was here first?. Big AG or big coastal populations?
    I did not read the story but if you take tax payers money maybe you should be held to some standards.-Cyclist
    when we say the same thing about welfare recipients, you cry like a wounded buffalo Sopchoppy
    It's their money, they spend it how they like. Truth and honesty have nothing to do with it. - Mr Jr
    "“A radical is one who advocates sweeping changes in the existing laws and methods of government.” "
  • saltyseniorsaltysenior Posts: 868 Officer
    i myself would push the agencies involved to locate ,with published proof, the source of each problem with the river....as I said before, a lot of stuff that has come out (but seldom mentioned) points to a sewage problem when there is a lot of rain...and this seems to pop up in a lot of other places too.........and they do the same thing--blame it on the folks up river..
  • RondoRondo Posts: 764 Officer
    Lake O is shallow, so, dredge it to a depth of 30ft in the channel and use the dredge material to raise the banks around the lake..
  • Fly baileyFly bailey Posts: 4 Greenhorn
    Who was here first big AG or big costal populations, who cares. The links to the Caloosahatchee and St Lucie are unnatural and have created an ecological monster. Big AG and the politicians in their pocket allow it to continue.

    What would I do, I don't know, maybe Mother Nature will fix the problem. I do know that diplomacy on this issue doesn't work. If you put enough people in a position where they have nothing to lose, nobody will win. The Acoe says the dam is not sound, it wouldn't surprise me if someone tried to create their own flow way south.
  • esteroestero Posts: 2,041 Captain
    The lake is much bigger then it originally was. Being dammed up created a mess. The flow out of the lake will never be what it was before all the roads and population was here. I don't see how the out flow could ever be close to what it originally was.

    Just because you’re  Offended  Doesn’t mean you right!

  • monkeybusinessjrmonkeybusinessjr Posts: 380 Deckhand
    Someone brought up a good point in that our soils in Florida have a lot of naturally occurring phosphate especially north of the lake. In other words, a big part of the issue is naturally occurring made worse by mans development of the land.
  • esteroestero Posts: 2,041 Captain
    Because of all the development I don't think that the lake, river or the Gulf will ever be like it once was before all the water dumping. Millions of dollars will be spent on many studies and nothing will be fixed.
    What a shame

    Just because you’re  Offended  Doesn’t mean you right!

  • testerman28testerman28 Posts: 1,329 Officer
    did you ever look at why they even fertilize cane..??? it grows if you want it to or not.. I agree it helps but at what cost?..
  • saltyseniorsaltysenior Posts: 868 Officer
    did you ever look at why they even fertilize cane..??? it grows if you want it to or not.. I agree it helps but at what cost?..

    with modern technology and chemicals today's farming uses very little fertilizer that not used up in the growth cycle...
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