South Florida Water Management District looks for solutions to rising lake levels

Posted: 5:23 PM, Oct 12, 2017
Updated: 2017-10-12 23:14:44Z
Water managers try to solve rising lake levels

South Florida Water Management District leaders are calling this one of the wettest rainy seasons ever.

Lake Okeechobee levels are rising and billions of gallons of water are flowing through the St. Lucie Locks.

Over the years, Pastor Kenny Berry in Belle Glade, says the issue comes up again and again.

"We need to be considered out here in the Glades," said Berry.

At a South Florida Water Management District meeting Thursday, potential solutions to the issue were presented.

"It's going to take a combination north, east, south, and west of Lake Okeechobee," said Randy Smith with SFWMD.

One in particular is deep injection wells.

The district is looking into drilling 50 wells on the northern part of the lake.

Each well can store 5 million gallons of storm water runoff per day.

The estimated cost is $330 million.

"Could be very productive tools that we can implement to keep the levels from rising," said Smith.

That kind of storage can't compare to the amount of inflows we're seeing coming into the lake.

Some people in the Glades are supportive of any kind of tool to fix that problem that arises each and every year.

"It is a plan that several people are throwing out there so we're open to the option, open to having a discussion about it," said Tammy Jackson-Moore with Guardians of the Glades.

District leaders will continue to research this method of reducing lake levels.