Army Corps to maintain current water releases

Posted at 3:31 PM, Mar 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-10 15:31:53-05

LEE COUNTY, Fla. -- The Army Corps of Engineers is maintaining the current release rates of billions of gallons of murky water towards Southwest Florida from Lake Okeechobee.

The goal is to continue lowering the water level at the lake, which had risen due to the recent rain. Right now, it sits at about 15.58 feet, which is down a quarter-foot over the past week.  That's much lower than its peak at 16.4 feet last month.

Currently, water is being released from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee River at a rate of 4,000 cubic feet per second at the Moore Have lock.  Water at the St. Lucie lock is flowing at 1,800 cubic feet per second.

However, local leaders say these releases are hurting the economy and ecology in the Southwest Florida and St. Lucie areas.