Toxic Water: Army Corps of Engineers reducing Lake Okeechobee water discharges

STUART, Fla. - The Army Corps of Engineers is scheduled Friday to begin reducing the amount of water being released from Lake Okeechobee.
     
Beginning at 7 a.m., the amount of water is being lowered from almost 2 billion gallons a day to under 800 million gallons.

As the water levels are being reduced, commissioners from five different counties will hold their first collaborative workshop on the water quality.

On Thursday, a legislative panel approved almost $3 million for short-term water pumping and storage options to limit Lake Okeechobee discharges into the estuary.

The majority of that money will be used to increase pumping out of storage areas south of the lake.

The increased pumping could move a billion to a little over 3 billion gallons of water a day through storm water treatment areas, water conservation south of the lake and into the Everglades National Park and the Atlantic Ocean.

A Senate committee is expected to come up with a plan on how to improve issues related to the lake by Nov. 4.

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