FPL storing billions of gallons of water from Lake Okeechobee each month to help with algae crisis

Posted at 5:35 PM, Jul 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-06 17:35:02-04

INDIANTOWN, Fla.- Florida Power and Light is now helping with the algae crisis on the Treasure Coast.

Each month, a cooling pond at FPL's Martin County power plant will take in billions of gallons of water from Lake Okeechobee.

"We are taking a little more than 2 billion gallons per month throughout the summer of the water from the canal, moving it to our cooling pond to hopefully alleviate the algae situation," said Sarah Gatewood, a spokesperson for FPL.

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The South Florida Water Management District asked the power company to help, Gatewood said.

She added that this is the first time the SFWMD asked FPL to get involved.

It's up to the SFWMD to control the releases, Gatewood said.

The water will come through a canal which connects to Lake Okeechobee.

"We already have a connection to that canal in place and the extra capacity here to take some water so we're happy to do what we can to help," Gatewood said.

FPL will continue to monitor water levels in the lake to make sure it doesn't get filled over its capacity.

The cooling pond is used as part of the process for making electricity, Gatewood said.

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